MIFFED by the current level of drug abuse in the country, the National Orientation Agency (NOA) has called for a collaboration among all stakeholders to eradicate the scourge from society.
Director of NOA in Delta, Mr Okoro Ivan, made the call on Thursday during a “Roundtable Discussion on Drug Abuse” in Warri, Delta State.
The event was organised by the NOA in conjunction with the Foundation for Development and Community Engagement (FDCE) to deliberate on ways to stem the increasing drug abuse particularly among youths in the state.
Ivan said that drug abuse was the platform on which all the social vices including armed robbery, militancy, prostitution, arson and cultism, among others, bred, adding that the youths were the target.
The NOA boss said that politicians used the youth as cannon fodders to achieve their nefarious aims during elections and urged them to engage their mind and energy on positive ventures.
“The solution is that our youth must wake up from their slumber and start thinking positively. They must start to speak and do things rightly.
“They have their future and the future of this country, so they must start acting.
“All hands must be on deck, the security agency, health workers must put in extra effort to nip the menace.
“Also, organisations saddled with inculcating national values like integrity, hard work among others should raise the awareness for our youth to imbibe and practice.
“Above all, the mindset of our youth must be transformed to change their attitude from bad to good,” he said.
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The NOA director identified peer group, lack of parental care, foreign bad culture and the social media, health institution, leadership failure and get-rich-quick syndrome as some of the causes of drug abuse.
Principal Staff Officer (Drug Demand Reduction Department) of the National Drug Law and Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), Mr Samuel Campbell, said parents, teachers and the government had vital roles to play to end the scourge.
Mrs, Omiwade Olukemi, Supervisor, Health Education Nurse and Mr Yakubu Hassan, Pharmacist both of Chevron Nigeria Limited in their presentations noted that drug abuse goes beyond taking hard substances like Tramadol, codeine and marijuana.
They called for more enlightenment campaign, counselling, empowerment and rehabilitation centres for the victims.
The FDCE coordinator, Mr Robinson Ariyo, on his part, said a working document would be formulated at the end of the deliberation, adding that a Committee would be set up to evaluate the strategy that would be used for effective advocacy on the dangers associated with drug abuse.
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