Jakarta. Chief Security Minister Wiranto on Thursday (12/07) drew attention to the daily loss of dozens of lives to drug addiction in Indonesia, and said the country's "narcotics emergency" may be taken advantage of in case of proxy wars.
"Every day, we lose 30 productive-age citizens to narcotics," Wiranto said during an event in Bogor, West Java, as quoted by BeritaSatu.com.
According to the minister, drug-related crimes and addiction can be used as a tool in proxy wars to weaken the adversary.
"It's much cheaper and less visible. But it can affect many people. The war on drugs is right before our eyes, whenever there's an arrest we seize tons, not merely grams. Can you imagine how many millions of people are affected?" he said.
Indonesia still needs to step up its antinarcotics efforts, both in law enforcement and rehabilitation programs, Wiranto added.
National Anti-Narcotics Agency (BNN) chief Heru Winarko said more than 3.3 million people used drugs in 2017.
"Drug use has declined from 2.12 percent in 2014 to 1.77 percent in 2017," Heru said.
In 2017, police seized around 1.1 tons of crystal methamphetamine – locally known as shabu – more than 850 kilograms of marijuana, and nearly 220,000 ecstasy pills.
In 2018, around 1.3 tons of crystal methamphetamine alone have been seized so far.
Heru expressed hope that other government agencies and ministries would support the antidrug agency's Prevention and Eradication of Drug Abuse and Trafficking (P4GN) program.
"Drugs are our common enemy. We hope there will be support from other ministries and institutions for our P4GN program, and hopefully it will also be incorporated into their respective work plans," he said.