The Lagos State House of Assembly has called on the State Governor, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode and all relevant stakeholders to embark on aggressive campaigns against the menace of drug abuse among youths.
The resolution followed a motion titled “Need to Curb the Menace of Drug Abuse Among Youths in Lagos State” moved by Hon. Desmond Elliot (APC- Surulere I) and seconded Hon. Segun Olulade (APC- Epe II) on the floor of the House.According to the lawmakers, the adverse effects of hard drugs on the youth and the society are huge, hence the need to tame the trend.
Speaking on the impact of drugs, Elliot said that youths had formed the habit of using drugs to get high, perform better in certain situation, to change their perception of reality or for other purposes.He listed the drugs to include: cocaine, heroin, cannabis, and India help consumption but now include seemingly harmless over the counter drugs such as cough syrups with codeine, rubber, gum, septic tank fumes, urine concentrates, Colorado, skushi, loud and kerosene gas.
“The House is aware that youths now abuse a combination of these substances with two popular drugs; tramadol and codeine which are commonly used for the treatment of cough and severe pains.
“The House is concerned that those mostly involved in this practice are unqualified pharmacists, nurses and road side hawkers selling to these young people who consequently commit sexual crimes and other violent acts.
“This House is worried that this abuse has damning and adverse health effects, which include mental disorder, liver cirrhosis and many socioeconomic consequences like school dropout cultism, armed robbery and other related crimes in the state.
“The House called on the Chairman, Task Force on Environment and Special Offences (Enforcement) Unit to carry out strict enforcement against sale of drugs by road side hawkers,” he said.
The House called on the Pharmaceutical Board to direct its members to restrained from selling drugs particularly those that required prescription over the counter without prescription from qualified physicians.
The lawmakers also called on relevant authorities to wake up to its responsibilities and address issues relating to the sales, distribution circulation of the said drugs and other ones.
In his contribution, Hon. Bisi Yusuff (APC-Alimosho I) said that lack of good parenting had aggravated the proliferation of hard drugs among youths while many had been sent to their early graves.
Hon. Segun Olulade, who commended the prime mover, urged the House to call on Ambode to expedite action in signing the Mental Health bill in to law and ensure the implementation to curb the effect of hard drugs.
Hon. Adefunmilayo Tejuoso (APC-Mushin I), said that the issue should not be taken with levity, saying that the government needed to look into the activities of chemists (licence and unlicensed).
The Majority Leader of the House, Hon. Sanai Agunbiade described drug abuse among youths as “a big threat to the nation”, calling for apprehension of drugs addicts and engaging them in Community Service.
In his ruling, the Speaker, Hon. Mudashiru Obasa, who called on artistes to collaborate with the government in the campaign against drugs, urged legislators to embark on advocacy at their respective constituencies.
Obasa, who called for aggressive campaigns and sensitization on the ills of taken hard drugs, however warned against indiscriminate closure of shops.
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