Riviera, Wellspring Academy win inaugural anti-drugs basketball tournament

On 12 December 2022 at 06:40

Riviera High School and Wellspring Academy won the inaugural Anti-drugs Basketball tournament in boys and girls category, respectively, which was organized by Rwanda National Police (RNP) to raise awareness against substance abuse.

The finals were played on Sunday, December 11, at BK Arena where students from various schools converged, marking the end of the month-long first edition.

Riviera beat Ecole Francaise 56-13 while Wellspring Academy saw off Green Hills Academy 18-10 in the finals.

The awareness campaign targeting students in international schools, through sports, is one of the RNP initiatives to combat one of the high impact crimes affecting youth development.

It was held under the theme: "Say No to Drugs. Don’t Drug Your Dreams Away."

One of the students, Godson Shema observed that "consuming drugs is suicide paid in instalments."

"I urge all the youth gathered here today to make the responsible choice of staying drug-free. With the involvement of each one of us, together we will create a drug-free environment and foster a culture of success and excellence," said Shema.

Blessing Isimbi Blessing, a Senior Five student at Riviera High School, also said the the youth have a leading role to play to fight drugs, since they are the majority targeted by drug dealers.

"As the youth, our role against drugs starts with not consuming or abusing them, fighting them, reporting dealers, advising our friends to stop because it is about our health and our future," said Isimbi.

Martine Urujeni, the vice mayor in charge of Social Economic Affairs in City of Kigali, urged the students to live a purposeful life.

"Be an example and an inspiration to others; stay positive by saying no to drugs and alcohol abuse, avoid peer influence and create change by reporting drug dealers," said Urujeni.

Commissioner of Police (CP) Bruce Munyambo, the Commissioner for Community Policing at RNP, reminded the students of the dangers involved in abusing drugs and the legal repercussions.

While thanking schools and students that participated in the tournament, he said, it was organized to create awareness and to enhance partnership to fight and prevent drugs, and to build work together against the vice.

"You have a bright future and your parents are striving to ensure that that future becomes a reality. That can only be possible when you are free from drugs," said CP Munyambo.

"There are cases of young people, who abuse drugs through sniffing, injections, smoking but there is also another issue of alcohol abuse among minors. Drugs affect both the consumer, society and the country in general. Stay positive, study hard, and save your colleagues by reporting people, who want to poison and destroy them by selling them narcotics for selfish and evil interests," CP Munyambo added.

He observed that through community policing and partnership, including with students, the RNP has been able to unearth some tricks used by drug dealers to drug young people and students in particular, and that some of them have been arrested.

During this campaign, and through information provided by some students, it emerged that some drug dealers sell them through snacks, E-cigarette cases and other hard drug cases in some schools.

"Sometimes, it is hard to know drug dealers and tricks used; go back to your schools and homes with a duty to work with the Police to report drug dealers and to contribute to creating a drug-free young generation and society in general," he emphasized.