By Charles Agwam
Gombe – Residents of Gombe in Gombe State have expressed divergent views on the ban of codeine following the Federal Government’s ban on the product.
The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) documentary, showing the abuse of codeine in the country, attracted the attention of the Federal Government to the menace.
One of the residents who spoke with Vanguard, Isa Yusulf commended the Federal Government’s move saying the drug has destroyed majority of the youths in the North.
“What the government has done is good, though it came a bit late. This codeine and other harmful substances have been destroying our youths, especially in the North for years while we looked the other way. I am glad that the government is finally doing something about it”.
Another resident, who spoke to Vanguard on anonymity said, the government’s decision to ban the product was hasty adding that the product has it merits and demerits.
“I think the Federal Government was in a haste to ban the product, maybe because it was BBC that did the report. Codeine is very effective for treating cough. It is only bad when it is abused”.
When contacted to ascertain the level of enforcement towards the ban of the product in the state, the state Commandant of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency, (NDLEA), Mr. Aliu Adole said ” We are waiting to receive instructions concerning the ban of codeine but we are doing our best on our part to control the abuse of the substance”
However, all efforts to contact the state Coordinator of National Agency for Food Drug Administration and Control, (NAFDAC), on their role in regulating the use of codeine proved abortive as he was not responding to several calls put across to his line.