African Civil Society Common Position on Drugs

Building on developments at the international level – including the March 2019 Ministerial Declaration on strengthening actions for the world drug problem and the recently adopted African Union Plan of Action on Drug Control – please find the‘African Civil Society Common Position on Drugshere.

The document seeks to incorporate the perspectives and guide the work of a wide range of NGOs from across the African continent, and help to shape and guide civil society and governmental responses over the coming years. The VNGOC is delighted to be supporting this initiative alongside our African partners.

The document originates from a consensus-building partnership forum organised by the Slum Child Foundation in Nairobi, Kenya in April 2019. Since that meeting, the document has been through three rounds of consultation. A first draft was shared with civil society partners across Africa for their inputs and suggestions via email in June 2019. A revised version was then discussed by civil society organisations during the meeting of the African Union STC on Health, Population and Drug Control at the end of July 2019. A final draft was circulated among civil society partners across Africa between October and December 2019. 

The final version, with sign-ons from across the continent, was formally launched and presented at a side event during the UN Commission on Narcotic Drugs (CND) in March 2020.

James Koryor

The policy brief assesses the current and long term impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on substance abuse in Liberia.

 

The document highlighted key areas including:

 

  1. The Impact of COVID-19 on Substance Users.

Plenary 6: Review and Reflections - A Panel Session

Drug Demand Reduction in Africa Virtual Conference ISSUP
Event Date
City/Region/State
Johannesburg
Country
South Africa

The Sixth Plenary Session of the 'Drug Demand Reduction in Africa: Prevention, Treatment and Epidemiology' Virtual Conference from 16th September to 10th November 2020.

Time: 2:00 – 4:00 pm SA

Register Here for Plenary 6: Review and Reflections: A Panel Session

 

   

Plenary Co-Chairs: African Union Commission and ISSUP Global

A panel session to respond to questions and issues arising from the previous five plenaries.

Panel Members (TBC):

  • Republic of South Africa
  • African Union Commission
  • ISSUP South Africa
  • ISSUP Global
  • INL
  • CICAD
  • Colombo Plan
  • ICUDDR

 

For more information on the 'Drug Demand Reduction in Africa: Prevention, Treatment and Epidemiology' Virtual Conference, please visit Africa 2020

Event Language

English

Plenary 4: Epidemiology and Its Role in Drug Demand Reduction

Plenary 4 - Africa Virtual Conference 2020
Event Date
City/Region/State
Johannesburg
Country
South Africa

The Fourth Plenary Session of the 'Drug Demand Reduction in Africa: Prevention, Treatment and Epidemiology' Virtual Conference from 16th September to 10th November 2020.

Time: 2:00 – 4:00 pm SA 

Register Here for Plenary 4: Epidemiology and Its Role in Drug Demand Reduction

 

Plenary Chair: Dr. Reychad Abdool, African Union Commission

1. A Continental Overview of Drug Epidemiology in Africa

Presenter:

  • Professor Isidore Obot - Director, Centre for Research and Information on Substance Abuse, Nigeria

2. Regional Perspectives

Presenters:

  • Dr Olubusayo Akinola - Programme Officer, Drug Demand Reduction, ECOWAS Commission
  • Nadine Harker Burnhams - Research Scientist, South African Medical Research Council, SENDU/SACENDU

3. Overview of Drug epidemiology in Latin American and the Caribbean

Presenters:

  • Pernell Clarke - Research Specialist, Inter-American Observatory on Drugs, CICAD - Caribbean
  • Roberto Canay - Co-President, ISSUP Argentina - Latin America

4. Synchronising Global Drug Epidemiology Data Collection

Presenter:

  • Chloé Carpentier - Chief, Drug Research Section, Research Branch, UNODC
  • Enrico Bisogno - Chief, Data Development and Dissemination Unit, UNODC

5.  Question & Answer Session

 

For more information on the 'Drug Demand Reduction in Africa: Prevention, Treatment and Epidemiology' Virtual Conference, please visit Africa 2020

Event Language

English

Plenary 3: A Focus on Treatment and Recovery

Drug Demand Reduction in Africa Virtual Conference ISSUP
Event Date
City/Region/State
Johannesburg
Country
South Africa

The Third Plenary Session of the 'Drug Demand Reduction in Africa: Prevention, Treatment and Epidemiology' Virtual Conference from 16th September to 10th November 2020.

Time: 2:00 – 4:00 pm SA 

Register Here for Plenary 3: A Focus on Treatment and Recovery

 

Plenary Chair: Kim Johnson, ICUDDR

1. Treatment Standards

Presenter:

  • Anja Busse - Programme Officer, Prevention, Treatment and Rehabilitation Section, Drug Prevention and Health Branch, UNODC

2. Service Quality Measurements in Treatment Facilities

Presenter:

  • Professor Bronwyn Myers - Chief Specialist Scientist, Alcohol, Tobacco and Other Drug Research Unit, South African Medical Research Council

3. Best Practices in Treatment and UTC Training in Africa

Presenter:

  • George Murimi - Training Coordinator for Africa, Colombo Plan DAP

4. Credentialing and Certification

Presenter:

  • Becky Vaughn - Director, Global Centre for Credentialing and Certification (GCCC) Colombo Plan DAP

5. Case Studies of Treatment Programmes in Latin America/Caribbean and Africa

Presenters:

  • Bawo O. James - Consultant mental health physician and a certified addiction treatment specialist, Federal Neuropsychiatric Hospital, Benin City, Edo State, Nigeria
  • Yuri Cutipé - Executive Director of Mental Health, Ministry of Health, Peru

6. Question & Answer Session

 

For more information on the 'Drug Demand Reduction in Africa: Prevention, Treatment and Epidemiology' Virtual Conference, please visit Africa 2020

Event Language

English

Plenary 1: Setting the Scene for Drug Demand Reduction in Africa

Drug Demand Reduction in Africa Virtual Conference ISSUP
Event Date
City/Region/State
Johannesburg
Country
South Africa

The First Plenary Session of the 'Drug Demand Reduction in Africa: Prevention, Treatment and Epidemiology' Virtual Conference from 16th September to 10th November 2020. 

Time: 2:00 – 4:10 pm SA

Register Here for 'Plenary 1: Setting the Scene for Drug Demand Reduction in Africa'

 

Plenary Chair: Jeff Lee and Livia Edegger, ISSUP Global

Conference Welcome and Introduction:

  • Jeff Lee, Senior Consultant, ISSUP Global
  • Livia Edegger, Deputy Director, ISSUP Global

1. Setting the Scene

Presenters:

  • Roger Weimann - President, ISSUP SA; Director, SANCA Eastern Cape
  • Joanna Travis-Roberts - Chief Executive, ISSUP Global
  • Brian Morales - Branch Chief Counternarcotics, Office of Global Programs and Policies (INL/GPP)
  • Ambassador Adam Namm - Executive Secretary, Inter-American Drug Abuse Control Commission (CICAD), Organization of the American States (OAS)
  • Ms Hendrietta Bogopane-Zulu - Deputy Minister, Republic of South Africa Department of Social Development (DSD)
  • Her Excellency Amira Elfadil - Commissioner for Social Affairs, African Union Commission (AUC) 

2. Global Perspective – A Global Overview of Drug Use

Presenter:

  • Giovanna Campello - Chief, Prevention, Treatment & Rehabilitation Section, United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC)
  • Chloé Carpentier - Chief, Drug Research Section, Research Branch, UNODC

3. Continental Perspective – An Overview of Drug Use in Africa

Presenter:

  • Dr Jane Marie Ongolo - Head of Social Welfare, Vulnerable Groups and Drug Control, African Union Commission

4. African Union Plan of Action on Drug Control and Crime Prevention (2019-2023)

Presenter:

  • Dr Abel Basutu - Senior Drug Control Programme Officer, African Union Commission

5. Global Initiatives by the Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs, US State Department

Presenters:

  • William McGlynn - Senior Advisor, Office of Global Policy and Programs, Drug Demand Reduction, INL, U.S. Department of State
  • Bruno Bui - Foreign Affairs Officer, Office of Global Policy and Programs, Drug Demand Reduction, INL, U.S. Department of State

6. Regional Perspective – Latin America and the Caribbean

Presenter:

  • Marya Hynes - Chief, Inter-American Observatory on Drugs, CICAD

7. Summary and Invitation to Send Comments and Questions Arising from Inputs

 

For more information on the 'Drug Demand Reduction in Africa: Prevention, Treatment and Epidemiology' Virtual Conference, please visit Africa 2020

Event Language

English

Plenary 2: Evidence-based Prevention: Policy and Practice

Drug Demand Reduction in Africa Virtual Conference ISSUP
Event Date
City/Region/State
Johannesburg
Country
South Africa

The Second Plenary Session of the 'Drug Demand Reduction in Africa: Prevention, Treatment and Epidemiology' Virtual Conference from 16th September to 10th November 2020.

Time: 2:00 – 4:00 pm SA

Register Here for Plenary 2: Evidence-based Prevention: Policy and Practice

 

Plenary Chair: David Bayever, ISSUP South Africa

1. What Constitutes Evidence-Based Prevention?

Presenter:

  • Jeff Lee - Senior Consultant, ISSUP Global

2. Prevention Standards

Presenter:

  • Giovanna Campello - Chief, Prevention, Treatment and Rehabilitation Section, UNODC

3. Media-Based Prevention Programmes

Presenter:

  • William D. Crano - Oskamp Professor of Social Psychology, Division of Behavioral and Organizational Science, Claremont Graduate University, USA

4. Alcohol Use Prevention (data on alcohol use and environmental prevention initiatives)

Presenters:

  • Maristela Monteiro - Regional Advisor on Alcohol and Substance Abuse, Pan-American Health Organization (PAHO) 
  • Professor Neo Morojele - Professor and Acting HOD, Department of Psychology, University of Johannesburg, South Africa
  • Professor Nazarius Tumwesigye - Associate Professor and Head of Department, Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Makerere University School of Public Health, Uganda
  • René Adams - Programme Manager, Substance Abuse Prevention and Drug Control Rehabilitation Division, Social Welfare Services Directorate, Ministry of Health and Social Services, Namibia

5. Question & Answer Session

 

For more information on the 'Drug Demand Reduction in Africa: Prevention, Treatment and Epidemiology' Virtual Conference, please visit Africa 2020

Event Language

English

The South Africa HIV Addiction Technology Transfer Centre: Journey, Impact and Lessons

The South Africa HIV Addiction Technology Transfer Centre:  Journey, Impact and Lessons
The South Africa HIV Addiction Technology Transfer Centre: Journey, Impact and Lessons
Event Date
City/Region/State
South Africa
Country
South Africa

The South Africa HIV Addiction Technology Transfer Centre (ATTC) is funded by the United States President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) through the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAHMSA), and forms part of the group of international ATTC’s, an extension of the US-based domestic ATTC network.  The international ATTC network seeks to support the HIV response by addressing the behavioural drivers of HIV risk, disease outcomes and adherence behaviours.  This webinar outlines the journey of setting up the South Africa HIV ATTC at its inception in 2017, details the impact and successes, and explores lessons learned in 3 years of funding.  We close by looking at what comes next for this ATTC and plans to ensure the sustainability of its products and TA.

When: Thu, Sep 17, 2020 2:00 PM - 3:00 PM BST

Event Language

English

A Review of the Substance Use Disorder Treatment and Prevention Systems in Kenya

Researchers predict that harm from substance use and rates of substance use disorders in sub-Saharan Africa will increase significantly in the next 30 years.

In order to have a well-functioning health system that works in harmony, the World Health Organization (WHO)describes the need for the following features:

  • trained and motivated health workers,
  • a well-maintained infrastructure
  • a reliable supply of medicines and technologies,
  • the backing of adequate funding with strong health plans and evidence-based policies.

This review shines the spotlight on Kenya with the aim to provide an overview of the current state of public sector SUD treatment and prevention systems in Kenya.

For the narrative review, the authors collected government documents as well as publications from the following: MOH, National Authority for the Campaign against Alcohol and Drug Abuse (NACADA), Parliament of Kenya, National Council for Law Reporting, Kenya National Bureau of Statistics (KNBS) and National Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) Coordination Board.

Key points from the discussion:

  • The Mental Health Act 1989, the main legislative framework governing substance use disorder treatment and prevention, focuses on institutional care only.
  • While there are only three public health facilities offering substance use disorder treatment in Kenya, several non-public sector actors are involved in SUD treatment and prevention activities.
  • The Ministry of Health has no specific budget for substance use disorder treatment and prevention

In conclusion, the researchers offer the following five-point proposal:

  1. Enactment of the Mental Health (Amendment) Bill 2018.
  2. Integration of substance use disorder treatment and prevention into primary health care to increase access to care.
  3. Use of money gathered from taxation of alcohol, tobacco and betting to increase funding for substance use disorder treatment and prevention.
  4. Characterisation of the substance use disorder workforce to inform planning.
  5. Enhanced collaboration between the government and non-state actors in order to increase access to SUD treatment and prevention.

Highlights from the First ISSUP Nigeria Bi-Monthly Webinar

The Nigerian Society of Substance Use Prevention and Treatment Professionals (ISSUP Nigeria Chapter) held the first of her bi-monthly update webinar series titled: 'Experience and challenges in delivering drug demand reduction interventions during the COVID-19 pandemic, capacity building on evidence based substance abuse prevention and treatment interventions, and the way forward' on July, 30th 2020 at 3pm. The webinar had 188 participants from across the globe.

The webinar was moderated by the President of ISSUP Nigeria; Dr. Martin Agwogie and the PRO, ISSUP Nigeria; Dr. Bawo James. Panelists were Dr. Oliver Stolpe (UNODC Nigeria Country Representative), Mrs. J. O. Titus-Awogbuyi (Director, Drug Demand reduction, NDLEA), Dr. J. O. Salaudeen (Director, DDR, FMOH), and Dr. William Ebiti (National Coordinator, CIND).

The webinar commenced with opening remarks by the Executive Director of ISSUP, Joanna Travis-Roberts, following which Dr. Agwogie introduced the panelists. Dr. James thereafter moderated the sessions with issues ranging from capacity building and engagement for substance use professionals utilizing IT resources in delivering prevention and treatment services in the intra-, and post-COVID era enunciated.

The following are major highlights from the webinar.

  • There is the need to be more proactive in addressing the issues of drugs and substance abuse especially with the present COVID-19 pandemic which has become a risk factor for substance use.
  • The challenges with access to drug treatment during COVID-19 and the need to develop alternative drug demand reduction operational strategies during the pandemic was emphasized.
  • The DrugHelpNet and other initiatives/supports of the UNODC was applauded and should be sustained.
  • The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), Federal Ministry of Health, ISSUP Nigeria and the CSOs were also commended for their initiatives in drug control in Nigeria.
  • There is the need to strengthen advocacy for appropriate government interventions in drug control.
  • Institutions involved in drug control in Nigeria, including NGOs/CSOs should be given maximum support by the executive and legislative arms of government.
  • There is the need for more synergy among stakeholders in drug demand reduction. Synergy devoid of institutional and professional discrimination.
  • Capacity building of practitioners was identified as the foundation in delivering evidence-based interventions. As such, sustainable strategies should be put in place to develop the capacity of drug demand reduction practitioners in Nigeria.
  • The need for similar and regular sessions, involving the major stakeholders, was advocated.

The next ISSUP Nigeria Bi-Monthly Webinars are scheduled for

  • September 24th 2020
  • November 26th 2020

Please be on the look out for details and updates on the ISSUP Nigeria news page.

First published in Solace Vol. 3 (2020), the official newsletter of ISSUP Nigeria.

ISSUP Nigeria

ISSUP Nigeria Newsletter - 3rd Edition

ISSUP Nigeria has released its third newspaper! This edition discussed the issue of cannabis criminalization, decriminalization and legalization in Nigeria, Curriculum development for addiction studies in Nigeria and a focus on state coordinators. The publication also includes report on the first ISSUP Nigeria bi-monthly webinar, a list of ongoing activities by members as well as upcoming events, meetings and conferences under the news column. Enjoy it!

ISSUP

Beer Drinking and Tax Levy in Botswana

According to the WHO, harmful alcohol use is one of the leading risk factors for the global burden of disease.

In response to concerning trends, governments around the world have intervened in the market for alcohol by levying specific taxes.  

In 2008, the government of Botswana imposed a 30% tax levy on all alcohol products to deal with problematic drinking in the country. The levy was initially set at 70% but was reduced to 30%.

Research into the effectiveness of these measures typically focusses on alcohol sales and self-reported levels of consumption. However, an area less understood is how members of society have responded to the interventions.

This study examined how beer drinkers in Botswana coped with the implementation of the new alcohol tax levy and its associated regulations.

The researcher adopted a constructivist approach, interviewing 20 members of the public who frequented the bars around the capital city, Gaborone.

Key Findings

  • Participants expressed frustration at the increase in alcohol prices, outlawed residential sales of alcohol, reduced hours of operation for bars and increased penalties for driving under the influence of alcohol, describing feeling like they were being treated like "small kids".
  • There was significant resistance, with participants stating that they would find a way of getting the alcohol regardless of the restrictions.
  • Some participants described the new shortened drinking hours leading to binge drinking.
  • Increased taxation has led to people sharing larger bottles of alcohol and being creative in finding ways to access alcohol.
  • Participants were forced to seek alternative ways to continue drinking, including going to shebeens that sell alcohol illegally.

The analysis highlights significant resistance from individuals in Botswana, with people seeking alternative ways of drinking when faced with restrictions. Instead of seeing the measures as a means of reducing disease, the participants felt it was an attack on their rights. Further research into the way alcohol policies are perceived will be necessary so the measures introduced have the intended effect.

The Sale of Alcohol in South Africa During the Coronavirus (Covid-19) Pandemic

On the 12th of July, in a bid to reduce the volume of trauma patients so hospitals have more beds open to treat COVID-19 patients, President Cyril Ramaphosa reintroduced the alcohol ban.

South Africa originally introduced a ban on all alcohol sales on 27 March. However, as lockdown restrictions were reviewed the ban was lifted.

According to President Cyril Ramaphosa, however, since the sale and distribution of alcohol was reintroduced in June, hospitals have experienced a spike in admissions in their trauma and emergency wards.

The South African government has faced pressure from the alcohol industry to relax the ban. The industry argues that the continuation of restrictions on alcohol sales will cause significant and long-lasting damage to the economy.

On the 15th of August, President Cyril Ramaphosa the coronavirus regulations would be eased and the government would end the ban on alcohol and tobacco sales. 

Report of the Pan-African Epidemiology Network on Drug Use (PAENDU) for the period 2016-2017

This is the first report of the Pan-African Epidemiology Network on Drug Use (PAENDU) and is based on available data for 2016 and 2017.

The report provides information on the methods used for data collection and presents data on drug demand reduction, especially treatment demand indicators, and also on law enforcement (arrests and seizures). 

The report is a summary of the information provided by focal points from the following nine (9) AUC project countries: Angola, Botswana, Cameroon, Ghana, Guinea, Tanzania, Togo, Uganda and Zambia; and six countries, with data from pre-existing surveillance programmes, that are collaborating with the African Union project – Kenya, Liberia, Mauritius, Nigeria, Senegal, and South Africa.

Special Theme: “Increased Domestic Financing for Universal Health Coverage and Health Security for All African Citizens- Including Refugees, Returnees and Internally Displaced persons”

Report of the Pan-African Epidemiology Network on Drug Use (EN)

Report of the Pan-African Epidemiology Network on Drug Use (AR)

Report of the Pan-African Epidemiology Network on Drug Use (FR)

Report of the Pan-African Epidemiology Network on Drug Use (PT)

A Review of the Public Sector Substance Use Disorder Treatment and Prevention Systems in Kenya

Abstract

Background

The burden of substance use disorders in sub-Saharan Africa has been projected to increase by an estimated 130% by 2050. Despite this, little is known about the substance use disorder treatment and prevention systems in the region.

Objectives

The objective of this review is to describe the public sector substance use disorder treatment and prevention systems in Kenya guided by the World Health Organization health systems framework model, with the aim of informing decision-making.

Methods

We reviewed official government documents obtained from hand-searching the websites of relevant governmental organizations including: Ministry of Health, National Authority for the Campaign Against Alcohol and Drug Abuse, Parliament of Kenya, Ministry of Treasury & National Planning, National Law Reporting Council, Kenya National Bureau of Statistics, the National Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) Coordination Board and the 47 County Governments. We augmented those searches with official documents that the authors were aware of by virtue of being practitioners in the field. Draft and retired documents were excluded. The findings of the search are presented as a narrative review.

Discussion

The Mental Health Act 1989, the main legislative framework governing substance use disorder treatment and prevention, focuses on institutional care only. While there are only three public health facilities offering substance use disorder treatment in Kenya, several non-public sector actors are involved in SUD treatment and prevention activities. Unfortunately, there is limited cross-sector collaboration. The Ministry of Health has no specific budget for substance use disorder treatment and prevention, while the National Authority for the Campaign Against Alcohol and Drug Abuse has an annual resource gap of about US$ 5,000,000. The substance use disorder workforce in Kenya has not been characterized.

Conclusion

We propose five key strategies for strengthening substance use disorder treatment and prevention systems in Kenya including: (1) Enactment of the Mental Health (Amendment) bill 2018. (2) Integration of substance use disorder treatment and prevention into primary health care to increase access to care. (3) Utilization of money from taxation of alcohol, tobacco and betting to increase funding for substance use disorder treatment and prevention. (4) Characterization of the substance use disorder workforce to inform planning. (5) Enhanced collaboration between the government and non-state actors in order to increase access to SUD treatment and prevention.

UNODC Strategic Vision for Africa 2020-2030

On entering the Decade of Action 2030, UNODC recognizes the need to increase efforts in Africa. UNODC proposes adopting a ‘business unusual’ approach in order to support Africa towards achieving the Sustainable Development Goals and priority goals of the African Union Agenda 2063. UNODC pledges to work with Africa to better address a significant number of issues critical for Africa’s stability, safety, security and health and to leave no one behind.

As communicated by Executive Director, Ms. Ghada Waly, during Africa Day in May 2020, UNODC is developing its Strategic Vision for Africa 2020-2030 which proposes accelerated and enhanced levels of cooperation with Africa in the areas of drug control, crime prevention, terrorism prevention, anti-corruption and addressing transnational organized crime. 

UNODC is inviting stakeholders to inform and be part of a consultative process to collect advice, insights, input and recommended approaches in response to needs and priorities.

To guide the reflection, we would be grateful if you could provide your views and inputs through this online questionnaire which poses the following questions:

  1. What key challenges does Africa face over the next decade with regard to drug control, addressing transnational organized crime, crime prevention and criminal justice systems? On which gaps or cross-cutting issues should UNODC focus more?

  2. Which solutions do you propose to address these challenges and how can UNODC support these efforts?

  3. How can UNODC support you to build bridges between Member States and civil society networks?

  4. How can UNODC work better with CSOs or the private sector to widen funding opportunities to address those challenges?

  5. Which national, regional and international partners would you propose for UNODC to collaborate with to address these challenges?

  6. What role do you see for civil society organizations and communities in realizing the opportunities and addressing the challenges you have identified?

Please note that the deadline for providing input via the online questionnaire is midnight (CET) on Friday 3 July 2020.
Inputs can be provided in Arabic, English or French. 

Answers or further inputs can also be provided directly by email to sarah [dot] vanderveen [at] un [dot] org.

The main outcomes of the consultative process of the UNODC Strategic Vision for Africa 2020-2030 will be available as a presentation in August 2020. Using the online form, please indicate whether you would like to receive a copy of this presentation by email.