9th June 2017

NZ CONTINUES TO FIGHT THE “WAR ON P” USING THE ARMY, BUT NOT THE NAVY AND AIR FORCE.

Newly released Ministry of Justice Class A drug statistics for the last 10 years show that the so called “war on P” is being lost. Points of interest include:

  • Class A drug convictions have increased 240% during that period (1,663 - 4,100)
  • Conviction/charge success rates have increased from 48% to 68%
  • The regional spread of increased convictions is extraordinary . Examples include:
    • Wanganui  900%
    • Te Awamutu 700%
    • Whangarei   594%
    • Masterton.  950%
    • Nelson. 672%
    • Hastings 525%
    • Taumaranui 1000%
    • Palmerston North 504%

For many years now we have heard the term “war on P” from politicians and media. Whist I don't necessarily agree with term, lets run with the analogy for the sake of the argument. If this was a war the the following would apply:

  • We are fighting it using only the Army (judiciary) and forgetting about the Navy (education)  and Airforce (rehabilitation)
  • The generals (politicians) would be sacked asap!
  • The battle is continuing to spread from the front lines (large urban centres) to the flanks (regions) whereby it becomes impossible to defeat the enemy.

The statistics only serve to reinforce the fact that demand for Methamphetamine continues to increase in New Zealand, and in fact has spread its tentacles across the country. Given that dealing offences are dealt with in the High Court, the convictions in the regions tend to be for lower level type offences such as possession of small amounts and possession of pipes and utensils which are dealt with in the district court. This clearly shows that use is increasing nationwide.

It is pleasing to see an increase in the conviction rate together with some recent decent sentences handed down to Meth dealers, however the only reason that these people are prepared to risk potential life imprisonment is that demand for the drug continues to rise. Eliminate demand and supply will take care of itself.