The National Agency for Food, Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) has called for cooperation among relevant agencies for effective control of drug abuse among Nigerian youths. Prof. Moji Adeyeye, the Director General (DG), NAFDAC, made the call in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria on Sunday in Abuja. Adeyeye said that such cooperation would go a long way towards effectively tackling the different aspects of drug abuse among youths.
“It is important for relevant agencies to work together to effectively tackle the problem of drug abuse among Nigerian youths. “There is a little boundary, for instance, between what the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) does and what NAFDAC does, and we work together. “There are some drugs that can be used licitly and can equally be used illicitly. “We are concerned with the licit use of such drugs while the NDLEA is concerned with the illicit use.
“A drug like codeine is an expectorant medically, but when people consume more than the prescribed dosage, it becomes illicit. “For tramadol, its medical usage is at the rate of 50 to 100 milligrams, but the one they bring into the country is about 500 milligrams, which can fry anybody’s brain,” she said.
The NAFDAC DG likened the menace of drug abuse to a war, which could affect generations of people. He, therefore, called for the cooperation of citizens in the fight against drug abuse.
“Drug abuse among our youths is almost like a war, which could wipe out three generations if we are not careful. “While government is doing its bit to regulate and check importation of illicit drugs into the country, parents should also do their bit to control their children and wards from picking up such bad habits,” she advised.
Adeyeye said that NAFDAC was also working with authorities in neighbouring countries like Benin Republic and Cameroon to check the importation of illicit and substandard drugs through their borders into Nigeria. She also suggested stiffer penalties against people who produced or imported fake and substandard food and drugs.