Negative police drug test results anger pupils

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Eleven children from a private school in Centurion thought it was a big joke when they were arrested for possession of dagga [Cannabis] on Wednesday. The children are aged between 13 and 19.

Inspector Sydney de Wet of the drug unit is quoted as saying someone near the school in Wierda Park had asked them to test several of the school’s pupils for drugs.

De Wet said the children boasted at school that they smoked dagga.
“The children said they were proud smokers of South Africa. One of the boys was upset when his urine tested negative (for dagga). He was convinced that he had used dagga.

“It was a big joke for them that they were arrested, De Wet is reported to have said. “I’m worried about the lawlessness that reigns among the youth. They don’t care about transgressing the law because the consequences of their actions don’t bother them.”

Shortly after the school’s 31 pupils wrote tests, the drug unit tested 14 pupils’ urine. Eleven of them, the youngest of whom was 13, tested positive for dagga, it is said.

The children said they had bought the dagga at taxi ranks in Wierda Park and Valhalla.

Of those arrested, the minor children were released into their parents’ supervision on Wednesday. Two 18-year-old pupils were still in custody by last night.

The owner of the school, Riza Steyn, said she had declared war on drugs. The school “specialised” in children with emotional and attention-deficit problems.

On Monday, police arrested “three green-fingered students” for keeping a dagga plantation in a room at the University of Pretoria’s student residence.

Police are said to have found dagga plants in various stages of cultivation, ranging from 20 germination trays to larger plants growing in cold drink glasses and half metre high plants growing on the veranda during their raid at the Olympus residence on Monday night.

The find included mature plants drying on hangers in the cupboard, bags of compost, supplies of fertiliser, an assortment of hubbly bubblies, dagga seeds and 51g of packed dagga during the search.

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