Schoolchildren Warned About the Dangers of Drug Abuse

 Schoolchildren Warned About the Dangers of Drug Abuse

By AmforGod J. Olisa

In a concerted effort to raise awareness, schoolchildren have been warned about the severe negative effects of drug abuse on their education, family lives, and future prospects. This warning was issued by various speakers, including representatives from the Nigeria Police Force, National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), Crime Reporters Association of Nigeria (CRAN), and Pastor Osita Collins. The event was part of the 2024 International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking, organized by CRAN in Lagos.

In his welcome address, CRAN President Olalekan Olabulo described drug abuse as a fundamental issue plaguing Nigeria, urging the government and security agencies to intensify efforts in educating the public, especially students. “As members of the Crime Reporters Association of Nigeria, we have committed ourselves to fighting crime through sensitizing students and the public on the dangers of drug abuse,” Olabulo stated.

Assistant Commander Mallun Musa, in charge of Media and Advocacy at the Lagos State Command of the NDLEA, emphasized the day’s theme, “The Evidence is Clear, Invest in Prevention.” He urged the students to stay away from drugs, be good ambassadors, and resist peer pressure. He highlighted that illicit drugs fuel crime and can derail their ambitions.

Lagos State Police Command spokesman Benjamin Hundeyin advised the students against experimenting with drugs, warning, “Once you take drugs, you lose control of your faculties.” He cautioned them against engaging in criminal activities, drug abuse, and cultism, noting that young offenders would be tried in juvenile courts and sent to juvenile homes.

Daniel Osita Collins, Chief Executive Officer of Jesus Care Reformation Centre for Drug Abuse and Misuse, called on all Nigerians to join the fight against drug abuse by reporting crimes to the police. He criticized the promotion of drugs and chemical substances through music, movies, and clubs, expressing concern that children are emulating musicians as role models.

Collins pointed out that cultism is a major pillar of other deviant behaviors, citing its disruptive and damaging impact on lives and careers. He mentioned that violent assaults, examination malpractices, drug abuse, rape, kidnapping, and murder are often linked to secret cults in educational institutions.

“Many reports associated with secret cults are not mere fairy tales but destructive realities,” Collins said. He stressed the urgency of addressing organized crime, which he noted has infiltrated homes, streets, and particularly tertiary institutions, warning that the future looks bleak without immediate and sustainable action.

“We have reached a low point in our societal ethics, values, and belief system. Contemporary times show a younger generation that hardly sees anything good in society—a generation that is disrespectful, arrogant, and hostile to authority, often resorting to violence as a means to settle scores,” Collins lamented.

The event underscored the critical need for a united effort to combat drug abuse and related crimes, aiming to secure a better future for the younger generation.

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