The reason why Egyptians were so fanatical in their support for the national football team in its match against Algeria is because they are constantly searching for happiness, and can find in football the transparency, accountability and devolution of power which they do not find elsewhere, said Dr. Ahmed Okasha, famous Egyptian psychologist. Still, Okasha expressed disappointment over the fact that the whole nation can be summed up by 20 players chasing a ball around a football pitch.
Okasha told the Health Committee of the Shura Council, during a meeting to discuss the problem of addiction, that there are 8 million people in Egypt who take hashish, of whom 1.5 million are addicted to the drug. The number of addicts increases by 30,000 every year, he said, and 30-40 per cent of addicts suffer from psychological diseases, which have a comparably higher incidence among males. In addition, those suffering from mental diseases experience a decline in the male hormone, according to Okasha.
Drug dependence is widespread among the unemployed, the illiterate, the divorced or widowed, and the rich, and it often pushes such people to commit crimes such as rape, said Okasha. He denied the existence of a conclusive treatment for addiction, a phenomenon known to humanity since primitive ages.
Major-General Ahmed Samak, assistant internal minister for social security, called upon civil society to assume a role in confronting drug dependence, citing the role played by Egypt women around the time of the 1919 revolution when they would tour the governorates to raise awareness.
Translated from the Arabic Edition.