Abia State Government Charges Youths To Shun Hard Drugs And Bad Influences In commemoration of the 2024 United Nations Day Against Illicit Trafficking And Drug Abuse

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Abia State governor, Alex Otti, has charged youths of the state to shun hard drugs and bad influences in order to secure their future and contribute meaningfully to the development of the society.
Otti asserted this in Umuahia at the police Officer ‘s mess during the commemoration of the 2024 United Nations Day against Illicit Trafficking and Drug Abus e, organised by the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency about the dangers of drug abuse.

He pointed out that knowing the effects and consequences of drug use will go a long way to help youths make informed decisions and seek necessary help when needed.
The governor, who was represented by his Chief of Staff, Dr Caleb Ajagba, described the theme of the event, “The Evidence is Clear: Invest in Prevention” as apt, adding that education plays a very significant role in empowering people with the information they need to resist substance abuse.
He stressed that the journey of life must be approached with the right intention to excel as it emphasises the need for youths that want to succeed to set goals for themselves and be focused on their goals.

Speaking, the wife of the Governor of Abia State, Mrs. Priscilla Otti lauded the collaboration between the Abia State government, the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), and other security agencies in the state for their efforts to combat illicit drugs and substance abuse

She noted that drug and substance abuse have become major causes of death in Nigeria, accounting for the deaths of 2.5 million people annually, according to a 2024 report by the NDLEA, while 14.4 million people fall into addiction yearly across the country.

Represented by the wife of the Deputy Governor, Mrs. Adaeze Emetu, the Governor’s wife described this year’s theme, “The Evidence is Clear: Invest in Prevention,” as quite timely, urging a preventive approach to the challenge of drug abuse.

According to her, “The Abia State government recently acquired a new office for the NDLEA here in Umuahia. I am also aware that Governor Alex Otti has offered to support the agency to equip and properly manage its rehabilitation center for addicts and other victims of drug abuse in the state.”

“This is in line with the state government’s agenda to develop a comprehensive mechanism for dealing with the crisis of drug abuse, particularly among vulnerable young people.”

“My office is currently coordinating multiple initiatives to promote social consciousness about the dangers of drug abuse in various communities.”

“We are also working with community stakeholders, particularly women leaders, to enlighten our youth on how their future and dreams could be ruined if they fail to guard themselves against certain exposures that could lead to psychological harm, prison terms, or death,” she stated.

However, Mrs. Otti commended the leadership of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) and other security agencies in the state for their commitment to the fight against illicit drug trafficking and consumption.

Earlier in his remarks, the state commander of the NDLEA, Mr. Amos Adelanwa Adetunji, said that drug abuse has become a global menace that needs urgent and quick response.

Adelanwa called on patent medicine dealers to desist from selling psychoactive narcotic drugs to youths and appealed to stakeholders to support them by providing operational vehicles and other logistics needed to eradicate illicit drugs and substance abuse from society.