By Ifeanyi Nwoko
Senator Gbenga Ashafa has said that parents as well as the community should be blamed for the high rate of drug abuse among young people.
In a statement issued by the Senator on Monday, he advocated community-based approach as the best way to fight drug abuse among youths in Nigeria.
Speaking at a sensitisation march against drug abuse, the Lagos East Senator again expressed concern over the increased rate of drug abuse among youngsters.
The march which was organised by Magodo Residents Association, Valley View Zone had in attendance, Dr. Dokun Adedeji, the National coordinator of CADAM- Christ Against Drug Abuse Ministry.
Ahsafa while speaking expressed worry that drug abuse had gone beyond the popular narcotics and alcohol to prescription pills and medications.
“The scope of drug abuse has now transcended beyond popular narcotics and alcohol, youngsters have also found refuge in the abuse of over the counter and prescription pills/medications at an alarming rate.”
“This nagging concern inspired me to sponsor a motion on the floor of the senate on “Nigerians involvement in illicit Global Drug Trade and increase in Domestic Abuse by Nigerian Youths”
“I also sponsored a bill for the amendment of the Nigerian Drug Law Enforcement Agency Act”.
“These legislative interventions seek to ensure that we overcome the menace of drug abuse in Nigeria.
“I am even more optimistic in the fact that Charity begins at home. I therefore call on all parents, guardians and caregivers to educate our children on the ills of drug abuse.
“We must also pay closer attention to the habits being picked up by our children and wards not only as a family but also as a community.
“We must be ready to inform our neighbours of whatever strange mannerisms we notice in each-others children because community effort is a more effective means of preventing the spread and continuity of Drug Abuse,” he said.
He reminded parents and other Nigerians that it was the role of both parents and the community to bring up a child and therefore, any child not properly brought up is the fault of both the parents and the neighbours.