Juliana MAIRIGA, Minna
The National Drug and Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) have disclosed that in the last six months, it has arrested two hundred and three suspects with a total seizure of two thousand, seven hundred and seventy kilograms (2,770.451kg), of various drugs. The Niger State Commandant, Joseph Iweajunwa stated as part of activities to mark the United Nations Day against Drug Abuse and Trafficking in Minna that the increase of in prescription drugs could be connected to the massive production by pharmaceutical companies who are cashing in on the growing demands for the drugs which clearly are not for medical purposes. According to him “there is no doubt that the efforts of the NDLEA in arresting the problem of cannabis sativa has given some positive result as the availability of cannabis on our streets have been greatly reduced to the extent that the criminals are now importing them from other countries like Ghana and Benin Republic. “This year is not different, for the first half of this year which is between January and June, the Niger state Command has been able to make a total seizure of 2,770.451kg of various drugs and we have arrested a total of 203 suspects. “There is also a seizure of 1,520.1 litres of cough syrups with codeine and two litres of chloroform. A major deviation is the size of tramadol compared to that of cannabis sativa, the
psychotropic substance or prescription drugs have become the major drugs of abuse including cough syrup with codeine.” While soliciting for more support from the government, Iweajunwa lamented that the State Command is handicapped and grossly underfunded as it cannot carry out its statutory responsibilities. He further disclosed that the command has in the area of Counselling and Rehabilitation performed well with fourteen (14) clients from January till date.