The worrisome trend of drug abuse especially among the youth, its implications on life and health across Nigeria has become increasingly troubling with many young people, including teenage girls and young women, getting addicted to drugs on a daily basis.
Webteam@ipledge2nigeria in a survey on drug use in Nigeria ‘‘one of four drug users is a woman.’’ At local joints, rave parties, event centres, clubhouses and even motor parks, the sight of exuberant youths wedded to narcotics and alcohol is a commonplace.
It takes the wildest imagination for one to mistake a waterlogged drainage channel for a swimming pool, but a high on drugs could easily blur the apparent contrast.
A 21-year-old man, known as Bunmi, died after overdosing on gutter juice at a hotel in College area of Lagos. He had seizures and was rushed to the General Hospital where he gave up the ghost.
There are also several heartrending reports on many people in the country plagued with mental disorder as a result of the effect of hard drugs .
The activities of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) shine a stark light on the urgent need for collective action.
Osun State Command has revealed that yesterday it destroyed over 3, 490 hectares of cannabis sativa farm at Mopatedo town., The bust was made known by the Osun Commander of the anti-narcotic agency, Nnadi Chidi.
According to the NDLEA Commander, 8,725 tons of cannabis sativa, 15 kilogrammes of cannabis seed and 30 kilogrammes of fresh weeds were also recovered.
The unveiled statistics from the NDLEA serve as a chilling reminder of the immense challenges posed by illicit drugs.
From the audacious attempts to smuggle drugs overseas to the colossal quantities seized within our borders, the grim reality of this trade continues to haunt our society.
The pervasive menace of illicit drugs demands an immediate and concerted response from the government and relevant agencies.
The time has come for a united front to combat drug peddling and prioritise comprehensive rehabilitation programs for addicts. Only by tackling both the supply and demand sides of the issue can we hope to effectively curb the destructive epidemic.
Urgent Call to Government and Agencies
Firstly, the government must allocate increased resources to law enforcement agencies, such as the NDLEA to intensify efforts in dismantling drug trafficking networks; strengthening border control measures; implementing intelligence-led operations and enhancing cooperation with international counterparts are crucial steps in curtailing drug peddling.
Simultaneously, there must be a significant focus on rehabilitating addicts and providing them with the necessary support to break free from the vicious cycle of addiction. Collaborative efforts between the government, healthcare professionals, and community-based organizations are vital in establishing comprehensive treatment programs.
Implementing targeted programs in schools, colleges, and communities, as well as leveraging media platforms, can empower individuals with knowledge about the risks associated with drug use. Additionally, fostering supportive environments that promote positive choices, mental health, and well-being will play a pivotal role in steering individuals away from the allure of drugs.
Furthermore, the government should encourage research and development in innovative approaches to addiction treatment and prevention..
It is only through a comprehensive and coordinated approach that we can hope to create a society free from the grip of illicit drugs, offering a brighter and healthier future for all.