CI News Facebook, Twitter and the website have this week received thousands of comments with many urging the government and the community as a whole to tackle this threat before it eats away at our society and takes away the lives of our loved ones.
Methamphetamine or meth is a Class A drug.
The current law on the Narcotics and Misuse Drugs Act 2004 section 6 (1) states that no one shall import or export from the Cook Islands any controlled drug other than a prescribed drug. No person shall produce nor manufacture any controlled drug, supply or administer or offer any Class A controlled drug.
Section 6 (3) states that any person who contravenes section 1 commits an offence against the Act and is liable for conviction of a term up to 15 years.
Section 4 states that any person who conspires with another person to commit an offence against subsection (1) is liable for an offence of a term up to 20 years.
A reader yesterday said: “Prevention is the only word to use. Tighten up Customs cause that’s the way it’s going to get into the country.”
Another on Facebook said: “Look at your airport! It’s passing right in front of you! Whether you’re a worker at the airport or a traveller it will continue to enter the island through these gates!”
Others also expressed the same opinion saying that border security is the first point of contact however it must be noted the limited resources workers at the airport have to work with.
“Airport, customs, shipping containers and all the workers who play a part, that’s how it gets in.”
“Only two doors into Raro, airport and wharf – how hard is it to monitor those areas. Beef up the customs security in that area and pay them good money to do the job,” another reader said.
A reader said that this is an evil drug that will destroy not only families but the user.
The reader said: “It can be a huge cost to society and the people of the Cook Islands do not need it. It will spoil a wonderful peaceful nation made up of beautiful people. Not only is it a criminal offence but it is also a health problem.”
Another alleged that the illegal industry will grow through night clubs or night spots where young people are most vulnerable.
On the Rarotonga Community and Beyond page where the Meth Menace article has been shared, Taina Savage says the drug affects all levels of society and the ones holding the chain are the importer and dealers.
Savage said the Cook Islands economy is too small to handle this if it not controlled now.
“Act now, put harsher laws in place that strip anyone importing this, including their right of entry to the Cook Islands.”