By Chibuike Nwabuko
Abuja （Sundiata Post）- Senate on Tuesday moved to address the illicit use of drugs across the nation. This followed the passage of a motion by the senate which called on Federal Government, through the Ministry of Health, to establish rehabilitation centers in each of the 36 States of the nation.
In a Motion sponsored by Senator Jeremiah Useni and nine other Senators, the Senate noted that with more rehabilitation centers in the country, addicts would be able to receive professional treatment in the short and long term, thereby, bringing down the rate of addiction and crime in the country.
“Drug addicts are seen everywhere on the streets,” said Senator Philip Gyunka, “I have the strong belief that if the rehabilitation centers are established there will be less crime in the society.”
Speaking on the Motion, Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu, emphasized that drug abuse negatively affects the productivity of our youth, stating that there was a need to stop the distribution of drugs at both the wholesale and retail levels.
“This issue of drug abuse is a threat to youths’ productivity. There’s a need to break the chain between the dealers and users as it is fostering crimes in the country. Security agencies should curb the distribution of drugs,” Ekweremadu said.
Commending the Senate President, Dr. Abubakar Bukola Saraki, Senator Joshua Lidani, stated that the Motion stemmed from the Senate Roundtable organized in Kano last year, which shed light on how big of an issue drug use is in the country.
The Senate further resolved to urge relevant stakeholders like the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) to key into the proposed rehabilitation centers, while, mandating its committee on Secondary and Tertiary Health to ensure that the Federal Government gives the centers the needed attention when established.
Sundiata Post recalls that on the 18th and 19th of December, 2017, a round-table held in Kano brought together state governments, local governments, traditional rulers, the Pharmaceutical Council of Nigeria and NGOs where issues bothering on the drivers of drug abuse in Nigeria; identification of the psycho-social and medical impact of the phenomenon, as well as legislative gaps and opportunities for action were discussed.