Nacada given powers to prosecute drug barrows

The National Authority for the Campaign Against Alcohol and Drug Abuse has been granted the legal mandate to enforce alcohol abuse laws.

Previously, NACADA had to rely on the National Police Service officers to enforce its laws.

The latest development affords officers of the Authority operational independence and may request the support of police officers only where necessary.

It follows the gazettement of the officers mandated to undertake the enforcement as provided for by the Alcoholic Drinks Control Act (ADCA), 2010 and the NACADA Act, 2012.

Interior CS Kithure Kindiki gazetted 22 Authorized Officers as required by the two statutes in connection with enforcement.

In a gazette notice published on Friday, December 1, Kindiki listed the names of the officers who, with the consent of an occupant or under the authority of a warrant issued by a Magistrate or Judge of the High Court authorising the person named in the warrant, may enter and inspect a dwelling place.

In line with section 51 of the ADCA, 2010, NACADA’s Authorised officers may, at any reasonable time, enter any place in which they believe on reasonable grounds that any person or persons are in any way contravening the provisions of the law.

NACADA Chief Executive Officer Anthony Omerikwa said the development will allow the Authority to execute its compliance and enforcement mandate in a legally binding environment.

“This is welcome news for us, especially at this time when we are heading to the festive season. I want to assure the public that moving forward, we shall do things differently to ensure that the law is followed as expected,” he said.

“We are also calling on all stakeholders in the alcoholic drinks space to play within the rules to avoid legal action,” Omerikwa added.

According to Section 52 of the ADCA, 2010, an authorised officer may examine an alcoholic drink or anything referred to in that section and require any person in such place to produce for inspection, in the manner and form requested by the officer, the alcoholic drink or thing.

An authorised officer can also open or require any person in the place to open any container or package found in the place that the officer believes on reasonable grounds contains the alcoholic drink or thing.

The law further states that the officer can also conduct any test or analysis or take any measurements or require any person found in the place to produce for inspection or copying, any written or electronic information that is relevant to the administration or enforcement of the Act.

“This now means that NACADA can fully implement its supply suppression strategies confidently with the full backing of the law. These are some of the teething problems that have been acting as stumbling blocks to the effective implementation of our mandate but I’m glad that we are now past that,” Omerikwa said.

The law dictates that the authorised officers can make such entry between 6am and 6pm of any day of the week.

It further says that NACADA officers executing the warrant shall not use force unless they are accompanied by a police officer and the use of force is specifically authorised in the warrant.

To ensure the proper execution of duties by the authorised officers, the law prohibits obstruction or hindrance, or knowingly making a false or misleading statement to an authorised officer who is carrying out duties.

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