The Edo State First Lady, Mrs. Betsy Obaseki, has promised to mobilise the support of the Governors’ Wives Forum in promoting massive drug abuse control programmes in the country.
She stated this in Abuja during a four-day training organized for members of the Special Purpose Committee on Legal Education and Drug Prevention Treatment and Care by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) in partnership with the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) and partly funded by the European Union (EU).
Mrs. Obaseki said that the drug abuse situation in the country demands the proactive and combined efforts of all stakeholders. People must understand that drug use disorder is a public health challenge and not merely a criminal justice issue. The Southern Governors Wives Forum will scale up programmes aimed at addressing substance abuse in the country”, she assured.
A former Director General of NDLEA and Coordinator of the Special Purpose Committee, Otunba Lanre Ipinmisho, stated that the problem of drug abuse is huge. “This committee is part of efforts by the NDLEA to involve the larger society in the fight against drug abuse. This training is to equip the committee members with the requisite knowledge to advise the NDLEA Chairman on evidence-based interventions and strategies.”
UNODC project coordinator, Mohammed Azim Arshad, in his opening remarks, thanked the EU for providing funding for the training. ” The training is part of the project response to drugs and related organised crime in Nigeria. This is one of the longest and largest projects by the UNODC in recent times. It is good for the committee members to undergo relevant training that gives them speed and progress in their assignments. “
In his address, the NDLEA Chairman/Chief Executive, Brig. Gen. Mohamed Buba Marwa (Retd), who was represented by the Agency Secretary, Barrister Shadrach Haruna, noted that he was pleased to welcome members and commend their interest and enthusiasm. He expressed satisfaction that the training would positively impact the goals and objectives of drug control programmes in the country. He thanked the first lady of Edo State and members of the committee for taking time out to be part of the training.
The training, which began on Tuesday was concluded on Friday, 15th October, 2021.