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Sharing Knowledge to Create Awareness Against Drug Abuse

02 Aug 2019

Kuala Lumpur, 27 June 2019 – In conjunction with  International Day Against Drug Abuse 2019, the IMU Library team supported by  IMU Cares, IMU School of Pharmacy, Jabatan Penjara Malaysia, Agensi Anti Dadah Kebangsaan and Pengasih Malaysia organised an Awareness Day Against Drug Abuse. The objective of the event was to bring about a better understanding on drugs, pharmacology and drug abuse related matters and the need to make informed decisions. IMU CARES The event was attended by more than 200 people including school children and their teachers from Sekolah Menengah Kebangsaan Bukit Jalil and Sekolah Menengah Kebangsaan Seri Saujana. Among the activities that took place were a Forum on “Be in Control – Drugs”, a musical drama sketch entitled “Message from the Prison” performed by 16 talented inmates, and an exhibition on the dangers of harmful drugs co-exhibited by Jabatan Penjara Malaysia and Agensi Anti Dadah Kebangsaan. The forum session was moderated by A/Prof Dr Zulkefeli, with four panel speakers who shared their expertise in substance / drug abuse related matters.

The speakers were: 
Prof Philip George from IMU’s Clinical Campus
Dr Ravi Ramadah from Agensi Anti Dadah Kebangsaan, Kamal Affandi
Kamal Affandi, Criminal Analyst
Hafizi Harun from PENGASIH (Treatment, Medications & Rehabilitation Centre)

During the forum, Hafizi Harun, shared his personal experience on the dangers of drugs and how he fought to overcome it. He is now helping others to also fight drug addiction. “There are a lot of contributing factors for a person to try drugs. It could be because of curiosity, social and psychological factors and peer pressure amongst others,” he shared. This forum provided a lot of knowledge to the audience through the information shared by the person who has been involved in drug abuse.

The audience also had the opportunity to ask questions to the speakers to get first-hand information on how to prevent drug abuse. Besides, a captivating musical drama sketch titled “Message from the Prison” by Jabatan Penjara Malaysia moved everyone in the auditorium. The one-hour performance illustrated their life in prison as drug abusers; revealing their daily routines, trials and tribulations they go through when living in isolation from the society. It was an eye-opening revelation for the community.

“Both sessions were a learning session for me and indeed, I felt proud to know of the initiatives done at the national level to help prisoners get back on track in parallel with getting the community to be more accepting and reduce stigmatisation. It humbles me to see the efforts by our civil servants to implement these initiatives with limited resources, respect their tenacity irrespective of the socio political climate.” said Prof Vishna Devi Nadarajah, Pro Vice Chancellor, Education of IMU.

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