330,000 Edo persons living with drug abuse problems
EDO State Commissioner for Health, Dr Patrick Okundia, on Wednesday, disclosed that 350,000 were living with drug abuse problems in the state, according to United nations Office on Drugs and Crime.
Okundia, who disclosed this while unveiling a billboard on drug abuse at Ring Road roundabout in Benin, said as a result, the Edo State Drug Control Committee had decided to carry out elaborate drug control programmes to drastically reduce the prevalence rate.
“A survey conducted by the United nations Office on Drugs and Crime drug abuse prevalence in the country is 14.4 per cent while that of Edo State is 15 per cent corresponding to 330,000 persons that have drug abuse problem. As a result, the committee has decided to carry out elaborate drug control programmes to drastically reduce the prevalence rate.
“The entire concept is targeted at capturing the attention of youths who are most vulnerable and the general public on the subject of drug abuse. Prime locations like the Kings Square, Ramat Park and Airport road have been chosen for the first phase of the sensitisation,” he said.
According to Okundia, unveiling the billboard marked the commencement of a massive sensitisation campaign tagged ‘Stop Drug Abuse in Edo State.’
He added, “The campaign is very timely because we are approaching the end of year festive season where people are tempted to indulge to a fault. it is imperative therefore to reflect on the message content of the billboards.”
One of the billboards contained a quote from the Governor, Godwin Obaseki, which says, “Let’s talk about drug abuse and protect the future leaders from destruction”.