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Nigeria works with India and China to deter drug abuse

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Nigeria plans to partner with China and India to halt the continued shipment of banned drugs from those countries to Nigeria.

The Director General, National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC), Prof Mojisola Adeyeye, said at the flag of a Youth Against Drug Abuse (YADA) Awareness Campaign organised by NAFDAC) and Yung Pharmacists Group hoisted.

According to her, NAFDAC is assiduously working with governments of South East Asia to stop drugs from leaving their shores.

She expressed worry over the fact that Tramadol, with higher prescription strengths of 120, 225 and 500 mg and marked “For Exports Only”, are being shipped to Nigeria from China and India.

“These strengths are not allowed in these countries, but they don’t see any problem in exporting them to our country,” she told her audience, which included the wife of the Vice President, Dolapo Osibanjo and the Emir of Kano, Mallam Muhammad Sanusi and hundreds of youth groups and organisations.

The Director General further disclosed that since May, 2018, when her agency returned to the ports and borders, it had seized over N200 billion worth of Tramadol and other unregistered drugs.

She charged the National Assembly to help rid the society of the menace of drug abuse by supporting the Drug Safety Bill, which seeks to impose stiffer penalties on drug peddlers.

She also tasked the Judiciary to stand up against drug abuse given to the fact that addiction to drugs had touched most families in Nigeria.

Professor Adeyeye advised importers of dangerous drugs to desist from their nefarious act, while charging government inspection and enforcing agencies to realise that the fight against drugs abuse is a fight for the future of Nigeria.

The Emir of Kano, Mallam Muhammad Sanusi 11, condemned the growing incidents of drug abuse in the society, while associating the phenomenon to the level of poverty and the failure of the system.

“In the last three or four decades, we have had the process of de-industrialisation and an increasing level of poverty, resulting in a large number of unemployed youths, a very large number of out-of-school children and a lot of frustrated people,” he stated.

For her part, the wife of the President, Hajia Aisha Buhari, while decrying the prevalence of drugs among youths, urged the society not to criminalise victims of drug abuse in the country, but to address the cause of the problem.

Represented by the wife of the Vice President, Dolapo Osinbajo, she lamented that many youths have gone astray while many lives have been destroyed as a result of the influence of drugs in the society.