Hajiya Sadiya Umar Farouq, Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, has called on the mass media to support her ministry’s activities aimed at curbing drug abuse in the country.
Farouq made the call in her address of welcome at the National Awareness on Drugs and Substance Abuse, on Tuesday in Abuja.
The theme of awareness programme is “Drug Abuse can Kill”.
“The continuous abuse of drugs has led to a situation of drug addiction and criminality while the addict continues to develop a bondage to the drugs.
“The effects of drug abuse is detrimental not only to the individual but to the society as a whole.
“Yet this problem is on the increase, especially in the conflict zones of the country which is a serious threat to our national security.
“Collaboration is of paramount important. We call on the media organisations to partner with us in this quest to reduce the prevalence of drugs and substances abuse in the country,’’ the minister said.
Speaking earlier, the Comptroller-General of the Nigeria Immigration Service, Mr Muhammed Babandede, said the minister’s initiative to address drugs and substance abuse, especially among the youth, was laudable.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that Babandede was represented at the event by an Assistant Superintendent of Immigration, Chiebuka Anumudie.
Speaking in same vein, the Controller General of the Nigerian Correctional Services, Mr Ahmed Ja’afaru, represented by Dr Moses Nnamdi, said drugs and substance abuse was affecting the youth negatively.
He commended Farouq for the initiative and expressed the hope that her effort would not be in vain.
During the question-and-answer session, Farouq hinted that by early next year her ministry would submit a policy proposal on “National Awareness on Drug Abuse’’ to the Federal Executive Council for consideration.
The high point of the event was the viewing of a five-minute documentary on the dangers of drug and substance abuse.
The event was attended by youth groups, media organisations and other relevant stakeholders. (NAN)