Desmond Mgboh, Kano
Plans are underway for a high-powered discussion between Nigeria and South East Asian countries such as China and India, with a view to halting the shipment of drugs not allowed in their countries to Nigeria.
Director General, National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC), Prof. Mojisola Christiana Adeyeye dropped the hint, on Thursday, during the flag off of a Youth Against Drug Abuse (YADA) Awareness Campaign organised by the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) and with Yung Pharmacists Group, in Kano.
According to her, “NAFDAC is assiduously working with Governments of South East Asia to stop allowing drugs that will destroy our youths to leave their shores”
She expressed worry over the fact that Tramadol, with higher prescription strengths of 120, 225 and 500 mg and marked ‘For Exports Only’, are being shipped to Nigeria from China and India.
“These strengths are not allowed in these countries, but they don’t see any problem in exporting them to our country” she told her audience, which included the wife of the Vice President, Mrs. Dolapo Osibanjo, and the Emir of Kano, Mallam Muhammad Sanusi, and hundreds of youth groups and organisations.
The NAFDAC Director General further said that since in May, 2018, when her agency returned to the ports and borders, it had seized over N200 billion worth of Tramadol and other unregistered drugs.
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She charged the National Assembly to help rid the society of the menace of drug abuse by supporting the Drug Safety Bill which, seeks to impose stiffer penalties on drug peddlers.
She also tasked the Judiciary to stand up against drug abuse given to the fact that addiction to drugs has touched most families in Nigeria.
Prof. Adeyeye advised the importers of dangerous drugs to desist from their act while charging at government inspecting and enforcing agencies to realise that the fight against drugs abuse is a fight for the future of Nigeria.
Emir of Kano, Mallam Muhammad Sanusi II, condemned the growing incident of drug abuse in the society, while associating the phenomenon to the level of poverty and the failure of the system.
“In the last three or four decades, we have had the process of de-industrialisation and an increasing level of poverty, resulting in a large number of unemployed youths, a very large number of out of school children and a lot of frustrated people,” he stated.
Wife of the President, Hajia Aisha Buhari, while decrying the prevalence of drugs among youths, urged the society not to criminalise victims of drug abuse in the country but to address the cause of the problem.
Represented by the wife of the Vice President, Mrs. Osinbajo, she lamented that many youths have gone astray while many lives have been destroyed as a result of the influence of drugs in the society.