Police explain why they will continue to pursue people who are found growing marijuana, miraa despite court’s ruling

Police say it will continue to crack down on all those found growing and using narcotics using the National Drug Authority Act, of 1993.

The decision follows a Constitutional court in Kampala that nullified the Narcotic and Psychotropic Substances Control Act of 2015 because the house passed without the required Quorum.

“In the premises, I would declare the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (Control) Act, 2015 null and void for lack of quorum on the part of parliament contrary to articles 88 and 89 of the Constitution and rule 23 of the Rules of Procedure of the 9th Parliament, 2012 made, pursuant to articles 88 and 94 of the Constitution,” Justice Muzamiru Mutangula Kibeedi said in a lead judgment last week.

However, the police say that the old law of the National Drug Authority (NDA) was not affected by the ruling and is still in force.

“Therefore, the police, DPP and Judiciary, will continue to afford their old powers, to tackle narcotics-related offences in the Act. The drugs under the NDA are illegal because they are harmful and affect both physical and mental health, relationships, career prospects, crime and the wider society,” said Fred Enanga, the police spokesperson.

Last year, 2022, a total of 2,797 cases of Narcotics/Drugs were reported to the police country-wide, compared to 1,668 cases reported in 2021, thus giving a 67.7% increase in the crime category.

A total of 4,818 suspects were arrested and charged in court, including 137 juveniles. Cannabis has consistently been the most used drug, followed by cocaine.