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Kenya: Nairobi Reports Highest Prevalence of Cannabis, 1 in 53 Kenyans Addicted


Nairobi — Nairobi has registered the highest prevalence of Cannabis use with National Authority for the Campaign Against Alcohol and Drug Abuse (NACADA) estimating abuse by 1 in 53 Kenyans aged 15-65 nationwide.

NACADA placed the prevalence rate in Nairobi at 6.3 per cent compared to the national average of 3.4 per cent in a report published on Friday.

The capital city is followed by Nyanza (2.4 per cent) and Coast region at 1.9 per cent.

The 2022 Status of Drugs and Substance Use (DSU) in Kenya report indicates that one in every twenty-six males aged 15 – 65 years (475,770) and one in every 333 females (43,037) were using cannabis.

The number of people using cannabis was projected to have increased by 90 per cent since 2017.

The report attributed the growing demand for cannabis especially among the youth partly to the low perception of harm due to myths, misinformation, and misconceptions.

The survey results reveal that the prevalence of lifetime use of cannabis for the population aged 25 – 35 years stood at 3.7 per cent.

Males had a higher prevalence of lifetime use of cannabis (7.8 per cent) compared to females (0.6 per cent).

Those in the urban areas had a higher prevalence of lifetime use of cannabis (5.6 per cent) compared to their rural counterparts 2.4 per cent.

From a regional perspective, the Coast region had the highest prevalence of lifetime use of cannabis (7.7 per cent) followed by the Nairobi region (5 per cent).

Cause for alarm

Commenting on the findings, Interior Principal Secretary Raymond Omollo said the statistics on drug and substance abuse are truly alarming and deeply concerning.