POLICE detective, Sergeant Netty Kundizeza today said Vuzu parties must be outlawed as they encourage drug and sex abuse amongst the youth.
Speaking during belated commemorations of World Mental Health Day and World Day of Rememberance for Road Traffic Victims held in Harare, Kundizeza said: “Young people have been organising Vuzu and sex parties where they use drugs such as marijuana, which will be in the form of cakes and sweets, crystal meth (mutoriro) among others.”
The commemorations were held under the theme Making Mental Health and Well-Being for All a National Priority.
Kundiedza urged parents to teach their children good behaviour to ensure they shun drugs.
“Parents must take their children for rehabilitation whenever they make mistakes. They deserve a second chance,” she said, adding that the increase in crime rates such as rape and robberies were a result of drug abuse amongst young people.
She said drugs will cause a huge loss to future generations in Zimbabwe.
NewsDay also spoke to a mental patient at Parirenyatwa Hospital (name withheld) who said: “I am a victim of mental disorder due to stress. It resulted in my admission at Parirenyatwa so that the situation can be monitored.”
In a speech read on behalf of the secretary for Provincial Affairs and Devolution in Harare, Tafadzwa Muguti, deputy director for provincial and local economic analysis Trust Mudzingwa said drug and substance abuse has exacerbated mental health issues affecting young people in the country.
“We are aware of mental health disorders such as bipolar, schizophrenia, post-traumatic stress disorders and eating disorders affecting people. Before the pandemic, an estimated one in eight people globally were living with a mental disorder, while estimates put the rise in both anxiety and depressive disorders at more than 25% during the first year of the pandemic thus widening the treatment gap for mental health conditions,” Mudzingwa said.
“People should not drive under the influence of substances and ensure that at all times they are in the right state of mind. During the festive season, many perish and many get maimed on our roads after driving under the influence of substances. Substance and drug abuse by young people has exacerbated mental health challenges that they face in Harare,” he said.