Narcotic Agency head Budi Waseso says dealers are slipping drugs into children’s food to get them hooked early

Indonesia’s National Narcotics Agency (BNN) Chief Budi Waseso.
Indonesia’s National Narcotics Agency (BNN) Chief Budi Waseso.

Budi Waseso, the head of the National Narcotics Agency (BNN), is known for his somewhat… unconventional ideas about dealing with Indonesia’s supposed drug crisis. He seems to have pretty much given up on his idea of building a special island prison for drug dealers guarded by crocodiles, but he continues to bring up the idea that narcotics rings are secretly slipping their products into the food and candy of Indonesian students as young as kindergarteners in a long-term plan to get the next generation hooked on drugs.

“They work with the traders in the school’s neighborhood by mixing narcotics with food, the goal is that these children are poisoned by narcotics so that when they get into high school they will become a new market share for narcotics,” Budi said at a school event in Batu City, East Java yesterday as quoted by Kompas.

This is in line with remarks he has been making since last year, like when he told a gathering of his fellow drug enforcement officers that, “Drugs have come to kindergarten children. They’ve become victims, as [drug dealers] mix the drug into their food and drinks. That is because their goal is to turn them into their future market. That is why drugs are a threat to the state and to the nation’s children.”

However, in all that time, neither Budi nor any other government official has ever been able to provide a single example drug dealers slipping their narcotics into the food and drink of kindergarteners, despite numerous scares like when authorities thought kids were becoming addicted to a particular kind of finger-shaped candy (turns out, kids just really like candy).

Besides not having any proof for his theory, it also simply doesn’t make any sense whatsoever. Kindergarteners obviously do not have any money to pay for drugs. So the idea of drug dealers constantly slipping their valuable narcotics into kids’ food in order over years to get them hooked so that maybe a decade down the line, when the kids finally do have some money to buy drugs, they will, seems like one hell of a long-term investment for any drug dealer…

During his speech yesterday, he also warned that Indonesia has more types of drugs in circulation than in any other country in the world. He said there are as many as 800 kinds of new drugs entering Indonesia, whereas the United States only has six types of narcotics, France only has four, and both the Netherland and Australia only have five.

Yes, that is what Indonesia’s highest authority on narcotics thinks, or at least is telling people. Last month he also suggested that people who criticize Indonesia’s use of the death penalty may, in fact, be members of drug syndicates themselves.

Subscribe to the WTF is Up in Southeast Asia + Hong Kong podcast to get our take on the top trending news and pop culture from the region every Thursday!

Reader Interactions

Leave A Reply


Support local news and join a community of like-minded
“Coconauts” across Southeast Asia and Hong Kong.

Join Now
Coconuts TV
Our latest and greatest original videos
Subscribe on