Delta State Governor Sheriff Oborevwori has directed the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) to declare a state of emergency in the country to combat substance abuse and illicit drug trafficking.
This, according to the governor, would go a long way toward mitigating the country’s concerning trend of substance and illegal drug usage.
Mr Hamisu Lawal, the agency’s Assistant Commandant General (Narcotics) and Director of Administration and Establishment paid Oborevwori a courtesy visit in Asaba and gave him the charge.
Poor socioeconomic background, poor parenting, family troubles, low academic achievement, and social pressure were among the elements he identified as contributing to substance and illicit drug usage.
Substance addiction and the use of illicit drugs, he claims, harm teenagers, particularly those in secondary and tertiary institutions, making them rowdy and destructive.
Oborevwori, who denounced the recent heinous event involving the NDLEA that resulted in the death of a child in the Okpanam area of the state capital, stated that substance misuse and illicit narcotics were on the rise in modern Nigerian culture.
As a result, he restated his plea for a concerted effort to halt the regrettable scenario, while also urging the agency to continue its efforts to ensure that Nigeria becomes a substance addiction and illicit drugs-free nation.
“I want to acknowledge the NDLEA for what they are doing in the war against drug trafficking and the use of illicit drugs. In recent times, there has been an increase in drug abuse and it is not a good thing for our state and our country.
“The factors responsible for this ugly situation include poor socio-economic background, bad parenting, family problems, poor academic performance and social pressure.
“So, I want to appeal that you should continue to do your work and the State Government is ready to support you. As a government, we will continue to support you in the fight against drug abuse.
“We need to, as a state, encourage the NDLEA to do more. If we look at most of the villages, our rural areas, drug abuse is more in use.
“Regarding the incident that happened recently in our state, I want to commend the effort of the agency in the reactive steps that they took by going to the place where the incident occurred.
“They visited the family of the deceased, including the injured one; the team from Abuja also came to ascertain what had happened and to bring the culprit to justice.
“My wife and I visited the bereaved family. I also saw the injured one and commiserated with the family. The state will be paying the hospital bills as well. As a state, we are not happy with what happened and I am glad that this incident has not stopped the agency from doing its job.
“Despite what happened, you should continue to do your job of ensuring a drug-free state and nation. If incidents like this discourage you, drug traffickers will only be emboldened to continue their illicit business,” the governor said.
Earlier, the Delta State Commandant of the agency, Barr. Abubakar Wada, and the Assistant Commandant General (Narcotics) and Director of Administration and Establishment, Hamisu Lawal, informed the governor that they were at his office on a courtesy visit.
Lawal, who revealed that the sad incident in the Okpanam area was not intentional, also expressed gratitude to the State Government for its early action in the matter.
While complimenting what he described as responsible leadership in the State, the NDLEA chief restated the Agency’s commitment to eradicating the issue of substance addiction and illicit drug trafficking in the country.