ADAP Committee Presents Report on Student Alcohol and Substance Abuse

Rev. Dr. James Wakaba hands over a copy of the Student Alcohol and Drug Abuse Report to Deputy Vice Chancellor( Academic Affairs)Prof. Robert Kinyua.

In Kenya, as in many other nations throughout the world, alcohol and drug misuse are major public health issues. The Kenyan government has developed a variety of tactics and activities to address these challenges, acknowledging the negative impact they have on individuals, families, and communities. Young adults, particularly students, are disproportionately affected, increasing the likelihood of poor academic performance, taking longer to complete their studies, or dropping out of university.

To address this issue, the Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology (JKUAT) Alcohol Drug Abuse Prevention (ADAP) committee convened a meeting with university management on Wednesday, April 17, 2024, to chart a way forward in the fight against student problems, particularly alcohol and substance abuse.

The committee also utilized the occasion to present the students’ ADA policy to management, with the goal of fostering a safe, healthy, and supportive campus climate conducive to academic performance and personal well-being.

Speaking on behalf of the Vice Chancellor, Prof. Victoria Ngumi, the Deputy Vice Chancellor (Academic Affairs), Prof. Robert Kinyua, lauded the move by the committee, noting that the policy is timely and will be important in supporting the university’s management efforts in the fight against alcohol and substance abuse among students.

Prof. Robert Kinyua gives his remarks during the event.

“Most young people nowadays are unable to access the labor market due to drug usage, which is a significant blow not just to universities but also to their parents and the society as a whole. This report will not only serve in prioritizing resource allocation for alcohol and drug misuse prevention and intervention activities, but it will also help identify areas of need and places where present resources may not be sufficient,” said Prof. Kinyua.

While thanking the university management for their efforts in the fight against drug and substance abuse, the committee chairman, Dr. Rev. Wakaba, thanked the university management for taking the necessary steps to provide a conducive environment for students by closing the bar that was being run within the university. He went on to say that the measure will help the committee’s efforts to protect the student’s and staff’s well-being.

“The report’s findings can help shape future rules and procedures pertaining to drug and alcohol usage on campus. These might include rules for the sale and usage of alcohol at university functions, how underage drinking laws are enforced, and how to deal with student and staff substance misuse problems,” said Dr. Wakaba.

Vodafone Wadulu, a second year Human Resource Management student at JKUAT, recounts his struggle with drug addiction.

Mr. Amos Warui, Central Regional Manager of the National Authority for the Campaign Against Alcohol and Drug Abuse (NACADA), expressed his optimism despite the grim reality. He stated that NACADA is committed to fighting drug misuse and emphasized the significance of a concerted effort to improve multiple frameworks in tackling the substance abuse problem that is wreaking havoc on society.

“Let us remember that NACADA cannot fight this battle alone. It involves the combined efforts of government agencies, civil society groups, communities, families, and individuals from all walks of life. Only by working together, with common purpose and conviction, can we expect to change the tide of drug usage and establish a happier, healthier future not only for our students, but for all Kenyans,” stated Mr. Warui.

Vodafone Wadulu, a second year Human Resource Management student at JKUAT and a victim of drug abuse, thanked the committee for the policy, saying it will be of great help to students who are addicts or on the verge of addiction, allowing them to stop abusing drugs and focus on their education and future.

“I am standing here today not only as a student, but also as a drug addiction survivor within these university walls. My addiction path has been horrific, with times of despair, loneliness, and self-destruction. My academic objectives, relationships, and health have all deteriorated as a result of substance usage,” observed Wadulu.

The Alcohol and Drug Abuse Handbook will be officially launched later in the year.

A commemorative photo of the Alcohol Drug Abuse Prevention Committee after the meeting at the Innovation Prototyping Integrated Center Building.

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