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Lagos State Government is fully committed to working with other stakeholders to advance balanced, people-centered and holistic approaches to curbing the menace of drug abuse in Nigeria

Naija news understands that The State Commissioner for Health, Dr Jide Idris, made this assertion on Monday in Lagos.

Idris said that the approaches would be fully in line with the universal drug control convention. “The recent crisis involving Tramadol and Codeine abuse, and other drug use problems, compounded by gaps in health and social services leave far too many people without the help they needed.“This leads to illicit drug cultivation and trafficking-related crimes and violence.

To curb the menace of drug abuse, governments at various levels should step up a campaign to educate and enlighten people on the danger of using illicit drugs. “The state government will leave no stone unturned in ensuring that the society is rid of the use and sale of illicit drugs.

“The unprecedented involvement of youths, especially secondary school students and undergraduates in drug abuse is unacceptable as they are the future leaders,” he said in a statement.

The commissioner said that the state government would continue to work with relevant agencies to stem the tide of illegal consumption of codeine and other mind-altering drugs.

He said that other arms of government would be effectively empowered to bring to book and deal with the registered and licensed premises encouraging illicit trade and trafficking in these drugs.

“We will continue to monitor and ensure massive public enlightenment campaigns against drug abuse and misuse through both public and private health facilities to create awareness on the dangers of this growing social menace,” Idris said.

He urged parents and guardians to collectively fight against drug abuse and monitor their children by maintaining close relationships with them.

Idris said this was in order to discover any sudden change in attitude and behaviour that might be drug-related and therefore, be in a position to take necessary corrective measures before it gets complicated.

Addiction does not start overnight; it is a gradual process that manifests various symptoms, including changes in behaviours and attitudes.

“Also, community and religious groups should help in curbing the growing trend by increasing public awareness campaigns against drug abuse and misuse.

“All of us can play our part and take action; policymakers first and foremost, but also concerned citizens, parents, caregivers, teachers, and engaged young people.

“We can all work together to prevent substance abuse and contribution to the actualisation of the Sustainable Development Goals”, the commissioner said.

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