The Federal Government has embraced the Sustainable Alternative Development Programme, as one of the key strategies for addressing Cannabis cultivation, which is the single largest local homegrown concern for the country
In this regard, Nigeria has resolved, to continue to support the effective implementation of the United Nations guiding principles on Alternative Development”.
These were the views of the Chairman/Chief Executive, National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), Muhammad Mustapha Abdallah in a paper he presented at the 30th special session of the General Assembly on the world drug problem general debate on Tuesday in New York.
According to the NDLEA Chairman’s address the factors that have impacted on both illicit drug supply and demand reduction have become necessary, considering the nature and character of contemporary world drug problem that has increased both in complexity and severity.
He stated that the special session had become important, as Nigeria therefore, stands ready to join forces with all stakeholders towards achieving these objectives.
“The consequences of drug abuse continue to ravage families, communities and the society at large in our region. The abuse of drugs also continues to undermine efforts aimed at promoting and achieving sustainable development.
“This is accentuated by the increasing use of Africa as a transit channel for illicit drugs and psychotropic substances which is worrisome. These activities have created security challenges, especially transnational organized crime in transit countries”, he said.
In view of the complexity of the drug problems, Abdallah added that Nigeria welcomes the adoption of the Revised African Union Plan of Action on Drug Control (2013-2017), saying that the country looks forward to complementary efforts by the international community for the actualization of its laudable objectives.
“Nigeria recognises that these challenges will require an integrated, multi-dimensional, balanced and comprehensive approach by the international community. This is because no single methodology can proffer solutions in addressing the different aspect of the world drug problem.
He specifically said: “Nigeria notes that at the sub-regional level, ECOWAS member states have, and are collaborating actively in the fight against menace of illicit drugs. In this regard, Nigeria welcomes the comprehensive assessment of the situation in West Africa the regional level which identified the gaps and needs with a view to effectively combating illicit drug trafficking, organized crime and drug abuse.”
Abdallah reiterated Nigeria’s full commitment to support sub-regional, regional and international mechanisms established to fight the world drug problem.
He sought for enhanced cooperation and collaboration amongst regional police chiefs, drug law enforcement agencies and border security as well as regional and international organisations to sustain the fight against illicit drug, saying that experiences have shown that such international cooperation have resulted in better exchange of information and intelligence sharing with positive impact on addressing the drug problem.
Speaking further, he informed the delegates that Nigeria has taken necessary steps with the launch of the National Drug Control Master Plan.
According to him the plan provides an integrated and comprehensive solution to a range of drug related issues, in line with international drug control conventions.
He stated that it consists of four pillars namely: law enforcement, drug demand reduction, access and control of narcotics and psychotropic substances, mad monitoring and evaluation as the coordination mechanism for effective implementation of the Master Plan.