Students advised against drug abuse

About 200 students from 15 public secondary schools in Akinyele Local Government Area of Oyo Statea have been charged to run away from any form of drug abuse as it is detrimental to their lives.

The charge was given recently at a drug symposium organised by Psychid Foundation, Jochjed Home Foundation, Konymandibio Foundation and Ayotokun Foundation, aimed at preventing and sensitising youths on the dangers in drug misuse.

The event with the theme: “Share facts on drugs, save lives,” was held at Award Hall, Akinyele Local Government premises in Moniya, Ibadan and had in attendance professionals from various fields related to drugs.

Speakers include NDLEA officials, a Psychologist and Pharmacist, who treated the topic “Drug abuse and the Nigerian youth: the facts and the way forward.”

The Local Inspector of Education (LIE), Akinyele Local Government, Mrs. Victoria Oloyede, who represented Oyo State Commissioner for Education, Mr. Abiodun Abdulraheem, commended the organisers of the programme, saying it was timely as the state was rated high in the practice of this social menace.

“The Ministry of Education is aware of the high rate of drug abuse among students and I am glad because it is an event borne out of passion to reduce the spread to the barest minimum. She asked for partnership from all stakeholders to key into fight against drug and substance use which is one of the agendas of Governor Seyi Makinde.”

Oloyede charged the students to go out to sensitise their school mates to stop drug abuse because it has no benefits.

While speaking on the danger of drug addiction, a psychologist, Mr Adelusi Adeniyi Taiwo, who represented the Southwest Coordinator of Community Intervention Network on Drugs (CIND), Mr Olusesan Kayode; said drug abuse was not gender-sensitive as even professsionals abuse drugs.

“Substance use is a serious problem and there are stages victims go through before graduating to the level of addiction. They are: experimentation, occasional use, regular use, compulsive use and dependent stages.”  He therefore, warned the students to be watchful and careful in order not fall victim of the menace of drug addiction.

Taiwo charged government at all levels to tackle drug addiction as a pandemic before it causes more harm in the society.

He however stated that the preventive measures that could be taken against addiction include seeking help at rehabilitation centre from professionals who will not be judgmental.

A Chief Superintendent of Narcotics, National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), Mrs Titilope Asiru, in her presentation said that one of the major reasons why the students should guard against using drug was that its consequences were not solely on the user but on family members, community as well as the society at large.

She said the effect of drug abuse were physical, psychological and social. The physical is said to deal with the organs of the body such as lungs and could lead to death and madness. Psychological effects ranges from attitudinal change, restlessness, depression, anger, anxiety while the social effects are cultism, armed robbery, rape, fight, kidnapping

In addition to this, inability to achieve dreams is another effect.

Asiru pleaded with the three tiers of government to invest in awareness against drug abuse while families, schools and religious centers should complement the effort.

The Director of Health and Counseling, YADCA, Mrs Mayowa Olubanke Omare stressed that one of the disadvantages of drug use is that victims miss important part of their lives such as lectures, etc.  She mentioned that drug is not the only thing being abused.  Things such as gum, septic tank, etc are sniffed but are very dangerous to their body system because of the chemical substances being present in those things.

Omare then warned the students who are engaging in the act of drug use to stop and those who have not started to not to because victims spend huge amount of money to recover.

Speaking with Nigerian Tribune at the end of the programme, Lilian Samuel from Community High school, Olanla, Akinyele, said she was glad to be a part of the enlightenment where she learnt to stay away from drug abuse because of its negative effects on the body system such as the liver and lungs.

Another student from Sam Adegbite Memorial Grammar School, Igboloyin, Ibadan, Ayomide Bello, said that his expectations were met as he was able to acquire more knowledge about drug and its misuse. He also expressed gratitude to the organizers of the programme for the youth. “One of my answered questions was why people venture into drug abuse and we were told that ignorance is part of it. Now that I know, I will inform friends and family members of the dangers in drug use,’ Ayomide said.


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