The Chairman/Chief Executive of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency Brig. General Mohamed Buba Marwa (Retd) has hailed members of the House of Representatives for their refusal to push the bill to legalize cannabis cultivation, sale and use in Nigeria during plenary on Thursday.
In response to the development on Friday, the NDLEA Boss commended the decision by a majority of the lawmakers to reject the bill, noting that it would further reinforce the achievements so far made in the declared war against drug abuse and trafficking in the country.
In a statement by the NDLEA’s Spokesman, Femi Babafemi, Marwa revealed that the 2018 drug survey figure of 10.6million Nigerians abusing cannabis alone is enough to justify the agency’s renewed war against the illicit substances, adding that the strong network between drug abuse and the security challenges across the country is incontrovertible.
Marwa said, “Insecurity is today, a full-blown malady with many manifestations such as insurgency, banditry, kidnapping, murder, robbery, reprisal killing, name it. Yet there has never been a government that is more committed to ending this spate of insecurity than the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari.
“The President has matched political willpower with resources, but the scope and frequency of these acts of destabilization and the audacity displayed by the perpetrators call for a second, critical look at the malaise.
“The persistence of the problem has forced on us the necessity to start to look at likely extraneous factors that might be sustaining the resistance from the criminal elements and in doing so, try to connect the dots. The permutations will lead to a list of probable causes, which will not exclude the use and abuse of illicit substances. In the final analysis, drug abuse is indeed one of the factors fueling insecurity. As such, Nigeria cannot afford to permit the cultivation, sale and use of the most abused illicit drug under whatever guise.
“This is why the decision by the honorable members of the House of Representatives to reject the reintroduction of the cannabis bill is a welcome and cheering news to us in NDLEA and the Nigerian public especially parents who daily and silently contend with the pains of seeing millions of their kids and wards go down under the devastating effects of cannabis abuse.”
Marwa, however, said history would never be kind to those who throw their weight behind the parents to protect them and their children from the law under any guise that would degenerate Nigeria into a nation of junkies and criminals, frustrating their efforts in the prevailing circumstances.