The Commander NDLEA, Nasarawa State , Mr Peter Odaudu, addressing journalists to mark the 2023 UN Day Against Drug Abuse
From Esther Akaa, Lafia
The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency ( NDLEA) in Nasarawa State has urged families to stop stigmatisation and discrimination against drug users in their households.
The State Commander of NDLEA, Mr Peter Odaudu gave the charge at a press conference as part of activities to mark the 2023 United Nations International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking held on Monday in Lafia.
According to him, showing love and care to those involved in drug abuse, especially by family members would go a long in rehabilitating them.
“For us to effectively stop stigmatisation, we must begin sensitisation from the family. In more developed climes, they have what is called Half-way-homes.
“This is where drug users undergoing rehabilitation are taken to be reconciled with their families pissed off by the actions, before finally letting them return home.
“So, if we must stop stigmatisation we must work essentially with the family because If your family members do not stigmatise you, they show you love and care,the impact would not be much as it would have been on you. ” Odaudu said.
The State Commander explained that theme for this year’s celebration tagged “People First. Stop Stigma and Discrimination, Strengthen Prevention” was aimed at sensitising the public against stigmatisation and discrimination of those involved in drug abuse, who in the agency’s perception were sick people.
He said the state command was taking the advocacy to the motor parks, radio stations, churches and mosques across the state to create awareness on inherent dangers in drug abuse and illicit trafficking.
The activities would culminate with the grand finale on Monday, June 26th , 2023 , when the agency would reel out its score card.
He, therefore called on stakeholders to collaborate with the agency in order to reverse the status of the state as having the second highest drug prevalent rate in the North-Central geo-political zone of the country.