Benin – National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), Edo Command, seized 836.4 kilogrammes of suspected psychotropic substance between June 2016 and June 2017.
The state Commander of the agency, Mr Buba Wakawa, made the disclosure on Tuesday in Benin at a seminar organised for members of National Patent Proprietary Medicine Dealers (NAPPMED) by the command.
Wakawa said that the seminar with the theme: “Repositioning NAPPMED in the Fight Against Drug Abuse”, was part of activities lined up to commemorate the 2017 UN Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking.
He said: “the focus of the seminar is on the control of psychotropic substances which records showed is on the increase in Edo state.
“The figure had risen in the last one year against the 40 grams recorded between June 2015 and June 2016.
“The recent figure comprised of Tramadol 537.7 kilogramms, Diazepam 281.42 kilo gramms, Rophynol 6.3 kilo gramms and Benzhexol 11 kilo gramms.
“The upsurge is frightening and alarming hence, the need for the workshop.
“The workshop will provide NAPPMED members the avenue to be informed and repositioned as critical stakeholders in the fight against drug abuse.’’
The commander appealed to NAPPMED members to shun greed and deal in genuine over the counter drugs instead of indulging in the sale of controlled and banned drugs.
“We are ready to partner with those involved in genuine business.
“Report promptly any outlet that is involved in illicit business or any person that is involved in the production and distribution of such drugs to law enforcement agencies for prompt action,’’ he said.
Delivering lecture on “The Role of Drug Vendors in the Fight against Drug Abuse,” a consultant psychiatrist, Dr Olaniyi Ayilara, said that refusal to dispense prescription medication was key in the fight against drug abuse
Ayilara, who works at Drug Addiction Unit, Federal Neuro-Psychiatric Hospital, Benin, said that early diagnosis could also help in the fight in fight against drug abuse.
In his remarks, Chief Godwin Okhiria, NAPPMED President in Edo, stressed the importance of Patent and Proprietary Medicine Dealers, saying “there is hardly any village ìn Nigeria without a patent medicine shop.’’