CORPS MEMBERS SENSITISE PUBLIC ON DRUG AND SUBSTANCE ABUSE
It was a colourful atmosphere at Area 1 taxi car park, Area 1, Garki Abuja on Thursday 16th March 2017 when the Drug Free CDS of the National Youth Service Corps, FCT Abuja staged a public sensitisation on drug and substance abuse. Residents were thrilled from start to finish as they confessed to have never witnessed a programme of such for a long time.
In her opening remark, Mrs Joy Haruna, the camp director NYSC FCT ABUJA, who represented the state coordinator, commended the cds group for such initiative. She further highlighted the dangers in the use of drug and substance especially as it concerns the taxi drivers and therefore encouraged them to shun such act as it put both their lives as well as that of their passengers at risk.
The guest speaker, Mrs Shikse Peret, a Clinical Psychologist from the Christian Woman for Excellence and Empowerment in Nigerian Society Rehabilitation Center, Jos, spoke at length on “The need for Rehabilitation as a Way of Ensuring a Drug Free Society”. She called on the government, religious groups, and cooperate organisations to support funding of rehabilitation centres as most rehab centres are either too expensive to be afforded by individuals in need of rehabilitation or too underfunded and at such do not meet up to standard. She further stressed that caring for victims of drug and substance abuse go beyond medical treatment and at such sending the victims to rehabilitation homes is a key step towards achieving a drug free society.
The Assistant Superintendent of Drug Demand Reduction, Narcotics division of NDLEA, Mr Augustine Nduka who represented the FCT state commander, expressed his delight with the programme. He discussed the several types of substance often locally abused, their medical, social, and psychological effects, and law biding on them.
He challenged the audience to always report cases of drug and substance abuse to the appropriate quarters of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency without fear or intimidation. Responding to questions from the audience, Mr Augustine assured that NDLEA is doing all it can to ensure reduction in demand for drugs and one of such is the collaboration with the NYSC Drug Free CDS to come up with a programme of this nature. He however called on the Federal Government to support the agency financially and structurally to enable it carry out its assigned duty.
The lecture rounded off with a testimony from an Ex drug addict, Mr. Emmanuel Gyang who narrated his ordeal while being an addict, he said it took personal determination, as well as rehabilitation to revive himself. He therefore challenged anyone still in the act to look inward within themselves and make the decision as rehabilitation would amount to nothing if the victims themselves are not ready to change. He commended the Corps members and strongly advised for a good follow up plan to make the programme a whole success.
There were interludes of drama, music, and poem recitation shuffled between lectures and comments to enliven and rock the crowd.
The chairman of Area 1 taxi car drivers association, Kabiru Ibrahim thanked the organisers of the programme and promised to work hand in hand with NDLEA and Drug Free CDS to ensure that his park remains drug free.