Thursday, June 26, 2014 4:18 pm
Lagos – About 230 million people or five per cent of the world population used illegal drugs, the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency said on Thursday.
The Chairman, National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), Mr Ahmadu Giade, said in Lagos that the figure was contained in the 2013 Report of the United Nations Office on Drug and Crime (UNODC).
Giade made the statement while briefing stakeholders on the activities of the agency to commemorate the 2014 International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Drug Trafficking.
The theme of the commemoration was: “A Message of Hope that Drug Use Disorders are Preventable and Treatable”.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the United Nations, through Resolution 42/112, on Dec. 7, 1987, set aside June 26 yearly as the World Drug Day.
Giade also said that no fewer than 200,000 people died worldwide from illicit drug-related cases in 2011.
According to Giade, the deaths occurred mostly among the youth.
He said that opioids were the most common group of substances causing the death.
“Apart from death, crimes committed by people who need money to finance drug abuse habits pose a serious threat to the peace and security of nations.
“Global treatment for drug abuse is believed to cost 250 billion U.S. dollars per year if everyone that needs help receives proper care.
“In 2013, a total of 3,271 drug dependent persons were successfully counselled in NDLEA facilities nationwide. This comprises 3,062 males and 209 females.
“Drug addiction is both preventable and treatable,” the NDLEA chairman said.
NAN reports that the new Director-General of the agency, Mrs Rolly Bode-George, Wife of a PDP Chieftain, Chief Olabode George, assumed duty on Thursday, following her appointment by President Goodluck Jonathan.