Jakarta. The government is attempting to address the root causes of drug addiction by facilitating rehabilitation programs in the face of what it calls a "narcotics emergency."
According to Jacobes Alexander Timisela, director for drug-related crimes at the National Police's Criminal Investigation Unit (Bareskrim), seven governmental institutions and ministries, including the National Narcotics Agency (BNN), the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Justice and Human Rights, will cooperate for the cause.
"We want to address the root causes. We have organized a rehabilitation program for drug victims and addicts," Alexander said during a focus group discussion in South Jakarta on Tuesday (14/11).
Alexander added that while various activities have been conducted to support these efforts, they lack coordination across related institutions and were only done "partially." He said this is beginning to change, especially as concerns are increasing over the younger generation's role in drug-related crimes.
"We found that in drug-related crimes 40 percent of suspects were youths," Alexander said.
In Indonesia, crystal methamphetamine, locally known as shabu, and ecstasy pills are most popular among drug users.
The country is also facing an increasing threat from psychotropics, as younger people are unable to afford shabu, which Alexander said costs about Rp 1,6 million ($118) a gram.
"To save the younger generation, we have help them gain strength to say no to drugs, whether it's through religious teachings, promoting safe and healthy lifestyles, or parental supervision," he added.