Nonsochukwu Uwa, Owerri
The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency, NDLEA, in Imo State, has expressed worry that Imo State was the only state without a rehabilitation centre for drug addicts in the federation.
The Assistant Commandant Narcotics, NDLEA, Mr Ahehu Lamuwa, made this known to newsmen during the feast of Barracuda organised by the National Association of Seadogs, NAS, in Owerri.
Lamuwa said if nothing was done, it would worsen the case of persons with drug addiction in the state.
According to NDLEA, “246 million people use drugs worldwide, and 14.5 million use drugs in Nigeria. And the production of illicit drugs has tripled efforts of law enforcement and if NDLEA, arrests five trailers of drugs, what it means is that 50 of the trucks have passed. So the law enforcement agencies have been overwhelmed.
“There is no single rehabilitation centre in Imo state; the only one we have is in Orlu Local Government Area and it is a private establishment.
“In 48 per cent of schools in Imo state, we have somebody selling drugs at the back of the schools. Imo State is the only state that does not have a rehabilitation centre for drug addicts,” he said.
On how to prevent the problem of drug abuse in Imo state, he advised that “there is need to stop early drug use; delay drug use till maturity; and don’t take drugs in front of your children. Teach parental/family vigilance and community participation in drug issues and also involve the experts in the prevention and management of drug issues.”