Calls for aggressive campaign
Lagos State House of Assembly at plenary on Monday passed a resolution calling on Governor Akinwunmi Ambode and relevant stakeholders to embark on aggressive campaigns against the menace of drug abuse.
The resolution was sequel to a motion moved by Hon. Desmond Elliot who represents Surulere constituency 1.
In the motion titled ‘Need to Curb the Menace of Drug Abuse Among Youths in Lagos State’ Elliot said the adverse effectsl of hard drugs on youths and the society is huge and that there is need to check the trend.
According to him, youths have formed the habit of using drugs to get high, perform better in certain situation and to change their perception of reality or for other purposes.
The drugs, he said includes cocaine, heroin, cannabis, India hemp and seemingly harmless drugs over the counter like cough syrups with codeine, rubber, gum, septic tank fumes, urine concentrates, Colorado, skushi, loud and kerosene gas.
The motion reads in part, “The House is aware that youths now abuse a combination of these substances with two popular drugs; tramadol and codeine which are commonly used for the treatment of cough and severe pains.
“The House is concerned that those mostly involved in this practice are unqualified pharmacists, nurses and road side hawkers selling to these young people who consequently commit sexual crimes and other violent acts.
“This House is worried that this abuse has damning and adverse health effects, which include mental disorder, liver cirrhosis and many socioeconomic consequences like school dropout cultism, armed robbery and other related crimes in the state.
“The House called on the Chairman, Task Force on Environment and Special Offences (Enforcement) Unit to carry out strick enforcement against sale of drugs by road side hawkers,” he said.
“The House called on the Pharmaceutical Board to direct its members to restrained from selling drugs particularly those that required prescription over the counter without prescription from qualified physicians.”
The lawmakers also called on other relevant authorities to wake up to their responsibilities and address issues relating to the sales, distribution circulation of the said drugs and other ones.
Attributing lack of good parenting as responsible for aggravation and proliferation of hard drugs among youths, Hon. Bisi Yusuf, (Alimosho 1 constituency) said many had been sent to their early graves because of drugs.
Hon.Segun Olulade (Epe constituency 2) who seconded the motion, commended the prime mover and urged the House to call on Ambode to expedite action in signing the Mental Health bill into law and ensure the implementation to curb the effect of hard drugs.
Hon.Adefunmilayo Tejuoso (Mushin constituency I), said the issue should not be taken with levity, saying that the government needed to look into the activities of chemists (licence and unlicensed).
The Majority Leader, Hon. Sanai Agunbiade described drug abuse among youths as “a big threat to the nation”, calling for apprehension of drug addicts and engaging them in Community Service.
While Speaker, Hon. Mudashiru Obasa, called on artistes to collaborate with the government in the campaign against drugs, urging legislators to embark on advocacy in their respectively constituencies.
While supporting aggressive campaign and sensitization on the ills of taking hard drugs, Obasa however warned against indiscriminate closure of shops.