To meet the demand for the very addictive substance “Kush,” sellers in Sierra Leone have resorted to digging up graves. “Kush” is widely marketed and smoked in Freetown even though it is prohibited in the nation. Joints are a common place to get opioids like fentanyl, although the precise composition of the very addictive substance is unknown.
An unsettling combination of botanicals, poisonous chemicals, disinfectant, and human bones makes up the synthetic medicine. According to one medical expert, the drug’s action is amplified by the small amounts of sulfur in ground-up human bones.
Locals claim that dealers have resorted to grave robbing, raiding “thousands” of graves to collect corpses to meet the demand. Among youths struggling with poverty and a lack of prospects, the 20p joint is gaining popularity. In a nation where the average yearly salary is just £400, the £8 spent daily on the drug by many people with an addiction is a tiny fortune.
A large number of people are abusing kush, and it has become a significant issue in many communities. The youths congregate in large groups, often dozing off while slouched over or resting their heads on their laps. People who are addicted to “zombies” can act irrationally, such as walking into traffic or falling from great heights. The remains of around a dozen users are discovered in slums every week, according to health authorities.
Young people in this West African country, one of the poorest in the world, are using kush to “leave the harsh reality of life” and embrace exhilaration. Adding insult to injury, Sierra Leone’s young unemployment rate of 60% is among the world’s highest.
As a last resort, families are bringing their child addicts to Sierra Leone’s only mental hospital, which is quickly becoming overloaded. “Kush” accounts for 60% of the hospital’s admissions, according to interim medical superintendent and resident psychiatrist Dr. Jusu Mattia. There is a steady increase in the number of referrals, and many of the patients are sedated upon arrival due to their aggressive tendencies.
The treatment plan includes anti-psychotic medicine and three to six weeks of seclusion therapy to assist the patient to wean themselves off of the addiction.