Borno Battles Drug Abuse In Displaced Persons’ Camps

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The Borno State Government has raised alarm over the increasing rate of drug abuse among the citizens of the state, especially in the Internally Displaced Persons, IDP, camps, as well as in communities liberated from Boko Haram control.

The State Commissioner for Justice, Kaka Shehu, who also doubles as Chairman, Borno State Committee for the Control of Drug Abuse, made this known in Maiduguri on Wednesday, saying that the state is considering declaring a state of emergency on illicit drug use.

He however said that officials are doing their best in the anti-drug abuse campaign despite the challenges posed by insecurity.

He said: “I recall that some of offices of the National Drug Law and Enforcement Agency, NDLEA, were attacked in Gamboru Ngala, Banki, Baga and here in Maiduguri before it was taken over by Boko Haram insurgency.

“But in spite of these challenges, the NDLEA Borno Command was able to recover more than 20 tonnes of various assorted illicit drugs.”

He added that some suspected drug peddlers had been arrested over the last three years, a development that led to the formation of the Drug Control Committee.

“The committee comprises, the military, NDLEA, Police, Civil Defence and other humanitarian and Non-Governmental Organisations.

On the activities of the committee since its formation, Shehu said: “So far, we have mapped-out an aggressive sensitisation on drug abuse in almost all the IDP camps because we have discovered that some IDPs are chronic addicts of illicit drugs.

“Our fear is that we do not want these IDPs to get back to their liberated homes and continue to constitute nuisances.

“We have had enough of Boko Haram and enough of our youth engaging in drug abuse.






     

     

    “We do not want to go to the camps to start effecting arrests now because of the condition they have found themselves,” he said.

    The anti-drug abuse committee chairman assured that “as we are moving to return them (IDPs) to their liberated communities, we will ensure that we clear the communities of nefarious activities.

    He disclosed that a truck that was heading to Gamboru Ngala with about 1, 200 kilograms of Indian Hemp was intercepted by security agencies, adding that “the committee will continue to liaise with NDLEA, to ensure that all liberated communities are free of illicit drugs.”

    “We will also liaise with Federal High Courts to ensure that all cases of drug abuse was handled with dispatch to serve as warnings to others,” Shehu said.

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