Authority of the National Agency for Food and Drug Adminitration and Control (NAFDAC) has raised the alarm that Nigeria is sitting on a keg of gun powder due to the high rate and prevelence of drug adicts across the country.
NAFDAC stressed that it is shocking that Nigeria is leading even beyond the international coverage of drug abuse globally which is put at five percent but lamented that Nigeria currently has 15 percent drug abuse rate.
The Director, Public Affairs National Agency for Food And Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) Dr. Abubakar Ateiza Jimoh, stated this in Ilorin at the weekend.
He also advised “Nigerians to be cautious of the type of food and creams they apply on their bodies as some of such items are causes of kidney failure, diabetics, cancer and hypertension.
“Most people perish because of lack of knowledge. There is need for parents to stand up to their responsibilities and not leave their parental rights to teachers in schools or guardians”.
Jimoh said the agency has an average conservative estimate of about 15million people who are on drugs and three million of them can be conveniently called drug adicts.
According to him, “this development had made the agency to conclude that the level of drug abuse had led to the high level of violence, kidnapping, terrorism, armed robbery and even dangerous driving by some Nigeria drivers.
“Most youths under the age bracket of 19 and 22 and even parents both male and female have seriously engaged in taking hard concoctions different from the common cocaine and heroin which names could not be ascertained imported into the country from other African countries.”
The Director of Public Affairs of the agency who is also a member of the 28 member Presidential Advisory Committee on Elimination of Drug Abuse which is multi-sectoral headed by Brigadier -General Buba Marwa (rtd) said the committee had series of dialogue sessions with various stakeholders on how to reduce, eradicate if not totally eliminate the abuse of drugs in the country.
The committee, according to him, would submit its findings and recommendations to the Federal Government in May this year for implementation.
Similarly, he disclosed that the committee was working and engaging various embassies of countries where these hard drugs are being imported to Nigeria by tackling the menace from the source and as well deploy multinational approaches ranging from regulatory, enforcement and sensitization.
Dr. Jimoh recalled that NAFDAC had recently destroyed billions of Naira worth of containers loaded with tramadol and other related hard drugs which if it had ordinarily gone into circulation would have destroyed several lives.
He also disclosed that NAFDAC had shifted away from being just a mear regulatory agency of public health institutions, but now a key driver in the present transformation agenda in changing the diversification of the economy from its monopolistic dependence on oil.
Dr. Jimoh who is a political Scientist added that NAFDAC is also controlling the chemicals imported by the petrol-chemical industries into the country while the agency is now laying emphasis on the promotion and development of the Small and Medium -sized Enterprise (SME’s) as a way of jumb starting the economy and announced that Nigerians consume either bottled or sachets water worth over N10 billion on daily basis which is being superintendent by NAFDAC.
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