The wife of the president of Nigeria, Aisha Buhari on Thursday in Kano said that society should not criminalize drug abusers, but should find solutions that will help them overcome the situation.
Aisha who was represented by the wife of the Vice President, Mrs. Dolapo Osinbajo made the remarks during the official flag-off of Youth Against Drug Abuse (YADA) Campaign in Kano, organized by the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) in collaboration with Young Pharmacists Group(YPG) at the Coronation Hall, Government House, Kano.
According to her, rather than isolating and discriminating drug abusers, the society should begin to look beyond the problem so as to get to the root of the matter and understand the main cause of the problem and address such problems for a lasting solution.
Mrs. Buhari, however, decried the prevalence of drug abuse among youths which has prevented persons suffering from injuries and other illnesses to have access to drug such as tramadol, cough syrup and other strong pain killers as they have been banned by the government.
She maintained that as a result of drug influence, the lives of many youths have been destroyed as they engage in all sort of heinous crimes which have led to their incarceration.
According to her, “It must be understood that whatever crime someone under the influence of drugs commits can be traced to his or her addiction to such drugs.”
She applauded the efforts of all government agencies in the fight against drug abuse in the country, noting that such efforts has led to the arrest and confiscation of 86 containers containing prohibited drugs which would have been released into the society.
Also speaking, Kano state Governor, Dr. Abdullahi Umar Ganduje urged the youths to shun drug abuse and engage their time in meaningful ventures that can give them a better future.
According to him, apart from rehabilitating the reformatory home in Kuru, his administration set up a taskforce comprising of all security agencies, including NAFDAC and the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) to fight the drug abuse among youths and children in the state.
Also speaking, the Emir of Kano, His Highness, Muhammad Sanusi 11, called on government at all levels to join forces in fighting drug abuse, which he said has negative impacts on the socity, particularly, among youths.
According to the Royal Father, it has become a rule in his Emirate that any member of the Emirate Council must pass through drug test so as to ascertain the persons psychological competence.
In her address, the Director General, National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC), Professor Mojisola Adeyeye says about 70 per cent of youths essentially, the young boys abuse illicit drugs in Kano.
The DG NAFDAC disclosed the alarming figure Thursday while flagging off youth Against Drug Abuse Campaign, holding in Kano.
Professor Adeyeye who posited that recent survey conducted revealed that prescription drug abuse is fast-emerging public health challenges especially in Northern Nigeria.
The NAFDAC boss regretted that the young girls and women of childbearing age in Kano are not left out of the endemic nature of the hard drugs in Kano which she claimed many considered to overcome frustration.
She called on family support to inculcate cultural and religion values on children in order to guide them from destructive path.
She noted that with over 98 per cent Muslims population and rich culture which is not separated from Islam, Kano should take the front banner in campaign on the fight against drug abuse menace in Nigeria.