Pharmacists Council Frowns At Drug Use Prevalence In Nigeria

 

By: Mayen Etim

KADUNA, North-West, Nigeria – Worried by the alarming statistics on drug use prevalence in Nigeria, the
Pharmarcists Council of Nigeria, (PCN) on Thursday flag-off campaign in the north-west to reverse the trend.
The World Drug Report (2019) had pegged drug use prevalence in Nigeria at 14.4 per cent or 14.4 million people between the age of 15-64 years which is comparatively higher when compared to global prevalence rate of 5.5 per cent.

A cross section of students at the event.

In his remarks, the Registrar, PCN, Pharmacist Elijah Mohammed, said curiosity and peer pressure were major reasons why people, especially school children and young adults embark on non-medical drug use.

According to him, the advocacy workshop is intended to achieve key objectives of providing a platform of interaction to increase awareness on the subject matter and discourage indiscriminate use of medicines and other substances among the populace especially youths.

“The seminar on drugs and substances abuse in Northwest organised by PCN for Codeine Control and other Related Matters Working Group (CCRWG) held in Kaduna, was conceived to provide a platform of interaction to increase awareness on the subject matter.

Other participants at the workshop.

“The goal is to explore and promote economic development potentials among Nigerian youth and help the target audience understand and appreciate the fact that it is profitable to live a healthy lifestyle without necessarily engaging in the indiscriminate use of illicit and licit substances,” he added.

Speaking on the topic: “Curbing the Manace of Drug Abuse through Information, Education and Communication,” the keynote Speaker, Professor Oluwatoyin Odeku, said the issues of drugs has been giving her a serious concern.

According to her, drugs are meant to address a particular health issue it was proscribed for which people now abuse without prescription, a development that have led to brain damage which is quite expensive to manage at rehabilitation centres.

“Drug abuse kills. Drug abuse truncates future. Children please don’t be involved in drug abuse. You have a great future. God has deposited a lot of potentials in you. Drug abuse affect the way your body performs. It affect important part of your body.

“It changes your brain chemistry. It takes control of your brain because it has affected the brain, some will become repressive or depressive. They look unkept. They engage in strange behaviour.

“The issue of drug abuse is a a big problem in Nigeria and all of us must come together to come up with the way forward.

“There should be surveillance on emerging drugs whereby the government will be strategically positioned to know about the emerging drugs with a view to nip it in the bud early enough,” she urged.

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