By Michelle Amba – EMTV News, Mt.Hagen
A total of 56 self-confessed drug addicts in Dei District, Western Highlands province have sworn to give up their bad habit.
The idea came to reality through a crusade organised by the community in Walgepka.
These men and young boys have been cultivating the marijuana plant, selling it and consuming the drug.
In a moving ceremony yesterday that was witnessed by church leaders, the community and the police, the group swore publicly to quit.
Uprooted marijuana plants were carried in and burned out in the open, signifying their decision to give up the practice.
James Buldung, in his mid 50s a father of five, has been smoking marijuana from an early age and is one of the 56 swearing to quit the drug.
“I have two sons and three daughters and I have been smoking marijuana since I was in primary school. This habit has ruined my family and I have decided to give up and look after my self now that I’m old,” said Buldung.
Moses Koi, single, has been smoking for over two decades and said this nasty habit has hindered his ability to find a partner and settle down.
“Now that I have quit, I hope to get married,” said Moses.
The week-long crusade was organised by the community and spear headed by those living and working outside who are in the village for the holidays.
Police in the province who witnessed the occasion commended the community for this effort and called on other communities in the province to follow this example.