1-3% of school bus drivers in Egypt use drugs: official


Thu, 07 Mar 2019 - 11:42 GMT

Traffic in Cairo - Flickr/Gigi Ibrahim

Traffic in Cairo - Flickr/Gigi Ibrahim

CAIRO - 7 March 2019: Mahmoud Salah, a Social Solidarity Ministry official, said that 10,000 school bus drivers have undergone drug tests so far, adding that current rates indicate that 1-3 percent of school buses drivers use drugs.

He told TeN TV that the ministry has an accurate database of school buses to conduct drug tests on their drivers.

Salah, who is a member of the technical office of the ministry's Fund for Drug Control and Treatment of Addiction, said that the government started to impose strict and deterrent measures on drivers driving under the influence of drugs in coordination between the ministries of education, solidarity and interior.

Traffic Police launched intensive campaigns on Egypt's high ways, Salah said, adding that a total of 90,000 drivers until now have been tested for drugs.

Amr Osman, assistance minister of social solidarity, and the addiction treatment fund's head, said that the number of addiction treatment centers rose to 22 from 12 in 2014, adding that five other centers will be inaugurated this year.

In an interview with Ahmed Mousa on Sada al-Balad, Osman said that there is a plan to provide all Egyptian governorates with addiction treatment centers by 2022.

Concerning railway employees, Osman said that the fund has tested 5,000 employees working in railways for drugs, explained that some of them have tested positive. Refusing to give an exact number, Osman said that the railway authority would later announce the figures.

The driver of the train locomotive that killed 20 people in February in Cairo's Ramses Railway Station after crashing into the platform, causing a deadly explosion of the fuel tank, was a drug addict, according to deputy head of the Parliament's Transportation Committee Mohamed Zain.

"The head of Egyptian National Railways (ENR) told me that the driver, who caused the locomotive explosion, was suspended from his work for six months due to drug addiction. But he returned back after servicing the [administrative] punishment," Zain told Egypt Today, adding the driver should, at that time, be referred to the prosecution.



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