The National Drug Law on Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) has commended the federal government for its declaration of a state of emergency on drugs and substance abuse by President Muhammadu Buhari.
NDLEA noted that the craze for substance abuse in the country was worrisome and had reached a level where a presidential intervention is inevitable.
NDLEA official, Mitchell Oforyeju, described the new policy as welcome development and as one legacy that would continue to speak in favour of this administration for many generations.
He said the unprecedented dimension of drug and substance abuse in the country had thrown many families in disarray as they scamper for elusive solutions.
“The words of Mr President that this is a situation of emergency that deserves urgent solution is absolutely comforting to parents and observers of the alarming state of drug abuse in the country.
“To most stakeholders the inauguration of the two-tier ministerial and presidential advisory committee on the elimination of drug abuse is timely. The use of drugs particularly by youths constitutes a major public health and social concern. As rightly observed by the President, Nigeria has moved from a transit country to a user nation,” Oforyeju said.
The NDLEA described drug abuse as a multifaceted problem affecting both the young and old people of different backgrounds. On one hand, is the debilitating health condition of people using drugs particularly the mental health implications.
The agency said additionally, the numerous socio-economic problems of school dropout, increase in crime rate, as well as low productivity, are challenges demanding immediate solutions.
It also remarked that the committee must, however, bear in mind that in spite of the strategic role of the agency in national security; it is one of the most neglected in terms of budgetary allocation. Principally the committee is expected to provide funds to lubricate the machinery of the agency by providing operational logistics as well as provide funds to address the welfare deficit of officers thereby restoring their morale.