By Yusufu S. Bangura
National Council for Civic Education and Development (NaCCED) in collaboration with Salone Reggae Movement (SRM) and Social Linkages for youth Development and Child (SLYDC), has organised free Reggae Peace Concert for youths.
The event took place on Friday, November 25 at the Casablanca Playing Field, Aberdeen in Freetown.
Speaking to youth during the event, Director of Programmes and Research of NaCCED, Thomas Johnny, said they organised the program to engage youth in a music concert just to educate them on the dangers of drug abuse.
He further stated that they would call it entertainment, but during the entertainment they would pass on messages to the youth on drug abuse, peace and non-violence.
“We and our partners are working on drug because we want to bring the attention of youth to the dangers of drug abuse and we also want to pass peace messages by advising them to maintain peace before, during and even after elections,” he said.
He stated that it was the first time they were collaborating with SRM to target youth who love reggae music , because the menace of common drugs like Kush, tramadol and marijuana, was in the increase in Freetown, but that they were planning to do similar event in other parts of the country.
He said they have worked with UNICEF to propagate the big six report on drug abuse using entertainment, not only in Freetown but also in the entire country.
He continued that the event was just one way of raising consciousness and raising awareness on peace as the election is fast approaching.
“We want youth to know that drug can destroy them and we depend on them as the economic power force for the country’s development, so we want to tell them that if this country has to develop we don’t need to import or export youth to do our work so let maintain our health and let be productive,” he said.
He concluded that they need to have serious engagement with youth in other communities and that they were hoping that the youth of Aberdeen community listen to the messages for them to stop taken drugs that would affect them.
Executive Director of social linkages for youth development, Habib Taco Kamara said recently the country has been experiencing increase of drug abuse, more especially Kush.
He said it is necessary for them to reach out to the youth in the form of concert, adding that majority of the youth listen to reggae music which sends messages to young people.
He further stated that they were bringing reggae music in order to advising them. He said they appreciated the concert and thanked NaCCED for coming up to supporting the initiative, and reaching down to grassroots and people that are affected.
He said they needed to go to the communities and sensitise the youth about the harms of in the communities. Singing of reggae music climaxed the occasion.
Speaking on behalf of the youth at Aberdeen during the event, Hassan Sesay thanked the organisers for educating them about the dangers of drug abuse.
Sesay promised that he and his colleagues would stay away from drugs abuse and that they would not engage themselves in any form of violence during and after the elections.