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Thursday, November 7, 2013

ICCON Frets over Abuse of Drugs by Youths

By Sheriff Balogun, Abeokuta
The Institute of Chartered Chemists of Nigeria (ICCON) has expressed concern that drug addiction among Nigerian youth is in the increase and called for urgent steps to be taken to check the trend.
The Institute made the call in Abeokuta at a two-day sensitisation seminar it organised on ‘Globally Harmonised System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (GHS) and Drug Demand Reduction (DDR)’.
It noted that "if the drug war must be won among the youth in the country, then every Nigerian adult has the responsibility to be involved in the war, through enlightenment and education."
The Institute’s Registrar, Mrs. Taiwo Bammodu, stressed that whoever contributes in fighting the drug war would be doing an invaluable duty not only to himself, but also to humanity, and posterity would always remember him.

Bammodu stated that in view of the worrisome increase in drug abuse “ICCON is making a clarion call to every Nigerian to be an ambassador of the GHS and DDR campaign. We need to reach out to a largely ignorant society and nip the consequences of drug and chemical mis-use in the bud”.
Chairman of the occasion, Prof. Ighodalo Eromosele, also expressed deep concern about increase of drug abuse in the country, saying, “It is particularly painful that the trend is most prevalent among younger generation whom we all look up to for a secure future”.
According to him, “Unless this ugly trend (drug abuse) is checked, the calamity that will befall such a future is better imagined than experienced. And it is in the light of this that I consider it as worthwhile any activity or programme that seeks to stem this ugly trend for our own benefit and for the benefit of generations yet unborn”.
He linked the cause of drug abuse to unavailability of relevant information and enlightenment programme, stressing “We cannot talk of sustainable development in a drug-ravaged society”.
Eromosele, who is a Professor of Chemistry, lamented the prevalence of drug abuse among the youths, and charged ICCON to know that it is their responsibility to ensure that people in the larger society be aware of the dangers of drug abuse to their health and future.

His words: “A reduction in the demand for drugs is one of the indices of a healthy society. I need not to educate this gathering on the enormity of the havoc that has been inflicted on society both within and outside Nigeria by the menace of drug abuse”.
Eromosele said “I am of the conviction that a good percentage of today’s drug addicts are victim of unavailability of information or enlightenment programmes such as this. Indeed we cannot be talking of sustainable development in a drug-ravaged society”.
In his goodwill message, State Commander of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), Mr. Mallam Faggae, said drug abuse was responsible for many criminal activities in the society, saying “it is vulnerable among the youths hence all hands must be on desk to flush out the menace since government cannot do it alone”.
Faggae said “We have to develop our society. NDLEA cannot do it alone so all hands must be on deck to fight the influx of drug abuse for better future”.
The Commissioner for Education in the State, Mr. Segun Odubela, said the government would continue to place high premium in teaching of chemistry in all the Secondary Schools and tertiary institutions in the State.
Odubela, who was represented by his Permanent Secretary, Mr. Ishola Ambali, said the seminar was timely and necessary in order to reduce drug abuse in the society and commended the body for holding the seminar.

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