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Senate Seeks State Of Emergency Declaration On Drug Abuse

Senate Seeks State Of Emergency Declaration On Drug Abuse

The Nigerian Senate has requested the Federal Government to declare a state of emergency on drug abuse due to the high prevalence of the problem in the nation.

In a Tuesday plenary session, the Senate approved a motion on “Urgent Need To Address The Menace Of Drug Abuse In Nigeria,” which was sponsored by Senator Hussaini Babangida Uba (Jigawa North West). The Senate also directed its Committees on Drugs and Narcotics to coordinate with pertinent agencies such as NAFDAC and NDLEA in order to organize a National Summit or Conference to tackle the issue.

Senator Babangida bemoaned the extent to which drug addiction has thoroughly penetrated Nigerian society and that young individuals over the age of 15 are becoming heavy users of narcotics.

“According to a report by the United Nations Office On Drugs And Crime And the European Union On Drugs use in Nigeria, about 14.3million Nigerians between the age of 15 and 64 are drug abusers; 10.6 million addicts were cannabis users, 4.6 addicts used pharmaceutical opioids and 238 thousand drug abusers used amphetamines,” he said.

He voiced concerns that the unfortunate problem now impacts all socioeconomic classes and demographic groupings in Nigerian society, highlighting the necessity for strong collaboration between the family and all levels of government to counter this threat.

He threatened to destroy Nigeria if the nation did not eradicate drug addiction to narcotics.

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“Nigeria is currently facing a rise in drug abuse which has reached an unprecedented level transforming from a mere transit route in the 1990s, into a country filled with drug abusers and drug traffickers all over its land space.

A significant number of deaths from accidents and violent crimes have been traced to the activities of persons under the influence of drugs especially the discovery of more dangerous substances called “Kurfürstendamm” in the North And “Umkpromiri” in the South.

The prevalence of drug abuse in Nigeria is a public health challenge which seems to be on the increase despite intervention by the international, regional, federal, and state bodies through laws, policies, and technical support,” he said.

Contributing to the motion, all the lawmakers that spoke agreed that the consequences of drug abuse will continue to endanger national development, public safety, and the family system if urgent action is not taken to strengthen the exciting legal, policy, and institutional frameworks to face the challenges with all these responsibilities.

They also wanted the National University Commission (NUC) to make the inclusion of special drug education a compulsory course in the general studies programme.

Additionally, the lawmakers gave the Nigerian Educational Research and Development Council, or NERDC, instructions to evaluate the country’s basic and secondary curricula with the goal of making special drug education a required subject in classrooms.

Godswill Akpabio, the President of the Nigerian Senate, requested in his speech that the Senate Committees on Drugs and Narcotics coordinate with pertinent agencies such as NAFDAC and NDLEA in order to organize a National Summit or Conference to meet the issue.

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