On Tuesday, the Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria raised an alarm concerning the huge consumption of codeine syrup in the 19 northern states of the federation.
According to the senate, the northern states were under threat due to drug abuse, adding that over three (3) million bottles of codeine syrup drug abuse were consumed daily in Kano and Jigawa states alone.
The senate said that across the northern states, women, both married and single, young girls in tertiary institutions and secondary schools, unemployed women, Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) were involved in drug abuse.
The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) reportedly arrested 2,205 people in 2015 alone due to drug related offences in North-West.
The senate urged the Federal Government to partner with relevant stakeholder, state, local government, traditional rulers, NGOs and others to create a holistic framework to fight drug abuse especially in the north.
The Senate also mandated the Ministry of Health to provide rehabilitation centres or clinics were victims of drug abuse would be treated. It also asked the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC), to embark on a vigorous sensitization campaign on the dangers of drug abuse.
Dr. Bukola Saraki, the Senate President, who presided over the meeting said that the Senate will take necessary action to tackle the growing threat.
“I want to commend lawmakers for their contributions. This is becoming a big issue for the country. Yesterday, I had the chance of meeting with pharmaceutical practitioners. We need to amend the NDLEA Act to reflect the current realities.
“By this motion, we are giving hope to every parent in Nigeria that we are committed to tackling the problem of drug abuse in every part of the country, especially in the North.”
Bayelsa State Senator Ben Murray Bruce also spoke on drug abuse at the Senate Floor yesterday.
Yesterday, I spoke on the floor of the senate on the issue of hard drugs in Nigeria, & the solution to the problem. https://t.co/fyfOekf9Im
— Ben Murray-Bruce (@benmurraybruce) October 11, 2017