The Association of Community Pharmacists of Nigeria (ACPN) in Ondo State has warned politicians against politicising the fight against drug abuse and illicit trafficking of drugs.
The Chairman of the association, Madu Ihekoronye, made the call on Wednesday during the celebration of the World Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking.
The theme of the celebration is ” Health for Justice, Justice for Health.”
Ihekoronye also called on all stakeholders to redouble their efforts to prevent Nigerian citizens, particularly the youths from indulging in drugs.
He said that effective responses to the world drug problem required inclusive and accountable institutions of criminal justice, health and social services to work hand in hand to provide integrated solutions.
Ihekoronye frowned at the daily rising trend of drug abuse and illicit trafficking in Nigeria, saying ACPN could not stay silent in the midst of the decadence.
The chairman said that government at all levels must accept responsibility to go beyond the circus of endless committees and volumes of reports to take real action against drug abuse and trafficking in Nigeria.
“Indeed, the whole body of pharmacists in Nigeria will like to see a more robust approach to address the problems of drugs and this approach must have pharmacists at the heart of it.
“The reason is simple; pharmacists are experts, with expertise in the whole gamut of management of drugs ranging from production to rational use of all classes of drugs and poisons,” he said.
According to him, Nigerians are tired of excuses of porous borders.
He asked the Nigerian government to pay close attention to job creation, infrastructural development, quality education and skills acquisition for the Nigerian youth.
Ihekoronye also urged the authorities to quickly address the minds of youths so that they would be vanguards of the campaign against drug abuse and illicit trafficking.
The chairman said that the association was worried because of the devastating effects that misuse of drugs has on human lives and the nation.
He called on all Nigerians to unite to combat the menace, saying that the association was looking forward to a population of youths that were bright and sound.
Ihekoronye noted that without combating the menace of drug abuse and trafficking, there was no bright future for Nigeria.
In his remarks, Amadi Okocha, the Chairman of the occasion, said that it was worrisome that misuse of drugs was confronting and weighing down the present generation.
Okocha said it was more disheartening that those seen as role models were also caught in the web of drug abuse.
He noted that if youths were properly nurtured to be free from drugs, they would be able to deploy their potentials optimally.
The debate was held for secondary school students as part of the celebration.
Students from Fiwasaye Girls’ School, Akure, Aquinas College, Akure, St. Louis Grammar School, Akure and Wexford College, Oba Ile, participated at the forum.
Miss Oluwadola Akintan of Wexford College said that everyone must play a role in creating awareness on the dangers of drug abuse.
Similarly, Miss Latifat Abdulquadri of Fiwasaye Girls’ School, enjoined parents to caution their children on the dangers inherent in drug abuse.