School bus drivers' drug abuse in Egypt plummets to 0.3% in 2022/2023: Minister

Ahram Online , Sunday 18 Jun 2023

Drug abuse among school buses in Egypt dropped to 0.3 percent during the school year 2022/2023 compared to 12 percent in 2017, Minister of Social Solidarity Nevine El-Qabbaj announced on Saturday.

School buses
A file photo of school buses. AFP


The finding is based on drug tests administered to 12,875 school bus drivers during the current school year, said Minister El-Qabbaj, who is also the chairwoman of the Fund for Drug Control and Treatment of Addiction (FDCTA).

School bus drivers who tested positive for drugs face termination of employment and were referred to the Public Prosecution on charges of driving under the influence, El-Qabbaj affirmed.

Intensified campaigns for early detection of drug abuse among school bus drivers will continue throughout the year, the minister said.

The FDCTA is receiving complaints from parents on the hotline 16023 to report any suspicions that school bus drivers are abusing drugs, said Amr Othman, the director of the FDCTA.

The government has started the campaign to test school bus drivers for drug abuse in 2014 as part of the state’s initiative to reduce road crashes as a result of driving under the influence as well as to lower drug abuse nationwide.

On a related note, in May, El-Qabbaj announced that drug abuse among public employees has dropped to 1 percent of all those tested in 2022, from 8 percent in 2019.

In 2021, Egypt began enforcing an Anti-Drug Law on public employees after a six-month grace period given to employees to confidentially report their addiction and receive free treatment ended.

The law allows for suspension or termination of employment for those who test positive for drugs.

Short link: