Abia State pledges readiness to reduce drug dependence among youth


THE Abia Government has pledged its readiness to support the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) to reduce high drug dependence by youth in the state.

Mr. Dan Okoli, the Abia Commissioner for Homeland Security disclosed this during a visit to the NDLEA office in Aba on Monday.

Okoli, noted that most violent crimes were committed under drug influence, adding that the agency would do everything possible to reduce drug-related crimes in the state hence the need for support from the government.

“You find out what crimes are committed when the perpetrators are under influence; so that is the root of crime and if you attack crime at its root it will be easier to uproot and eradicate.

“That is why I am interested in the NDLEA and we are going to do things to the best of our ability to assist NDLEA to reduce drug abuse to the barest minimum in Abia State.

“Supporting reduction of drug abuse in Abia will make it easier for me, my ministry and other security agencies in the state to curb crime.

“So we are going to collaborate with them and synergise with other security agencies to reduce crime in Abia.

“We will also try to monitor them, that is the security agencies that we collaborate with, to reduce compromise because where you put your resources, you also look in there,” he said.

Okoli also promised his ministry would help the agencies fish out bad eggs among them who frustrated their plans to weed out criminals from the state.

Reacting to 26 drug suspects arrested from “Milverton York” in Aba, he said he received information detailing the evils happening there and passed the same on to the NDLEA resulting in the timely arrest of the culprits.

The commissioner said part of his ministry’s mandate was advocacy saying that the ministry intended to sensitize community leaders, transport unions and vigilante groups on security issues.

He also promised to work with security agencies to connect with lawmakers in the state and at federal levels to review punishment for drug offenders and other criminals in order to deter them from continuing their practice.

Earlier, the Abia Commander, NDLEA, Mr. Bamidele Akingbade, thanked the Commissioner for visiting the agency to discuss issues that would enhance security in the state.

He noted that Abia had a high preponderance of hard drugs stressing that NDLEA has been doing its best but called for support to overcome the agency’s handicaps such as lack of vehicles to work with.

Akingbade said 26 suspects arrested were part of the agency’s Christmas and New Year operations to ensure drug dealers were not allowed a field day in the state.

He also urged the state to support his agency’s drive to review drug-related laws and sensitize the legal bench to ensure adequate punishment to deter drug dealers not minding the quantity they carry.

NAN reports that NDLEA confiscated assorted drugs including heroin, cocaine, marijuana, marijuana in hot drinks, packets of tramadol and cocaine hidden in clothing buttons from the suspects. (NAN)

– Jan. 20, 2020 @ 13:49 GMT |

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