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Over 14.3m Nige­ri­ans Abuse Drugs Year­ly ‑NBS

Source: VGADA

The report on the first ‑ever Nation­al Sur­vey on Drug Use in Nige­ria , which was pre­sent­ed by the Fed­er­al Gov­ern­ment on Tues­day in Abu­ja , has shown that 14 .3 mil­lion peo­ple , rep­re­sent­ing approx­i­mate­ly 14 .4 per cent of the coun­try ’s pop­u­la­tion ( between age 15 and 64 ) , abused drug sub­stances in the past one year .

The project, which was sup­port­ed by the Unit­ed Nations Office on Drug and Crime , and the Euro­pean Union , was car­ried out by the Nation­al Bureau of Sta­tis­tics and Cen­tre for Research and Infor­ma­tion on Sub­stance Abuse as part of a large- scale project being imple­ment­ed in Nige­ria under the 10 th Euro­pean Devel­op­ment Fund Modal­i­ty .

Accord­ing to the sur­vey , 10 .6 mil­lion Nige­ri­ans abused cannabis in 2018 while 4 .6 mil­lion abused opi­ods . The report said that 2 .4 mil­lion youths and adults also abused cough syrups with 92 , 000 more using cocaine . Oth­er drugs com­mon­ly abused dur­ing the peri­od are tran­quil­iz­ers and seda­tives, sol­vent , inhalers, amphet­a­mines and pre­scrip­tion stim­u­lants .

The sur­vey said that the preva­lence of the men­ace was more pro­nounced in the South ‑West geo ‑polit­i­cal zone with 22 . 4 per cent or 4. 3 mil­lion users . Oyo and Lagos states lead in the zone. The South- South came sec­ond in the list , while the South- East , with 1.55 mil­lion users , came third . The North — Cen­tral , with 10 per cent or 1 .5 mil­lion users , was ranked low­est.

The Direc­tor , Depart­ment for Oper­a­tions at UNODC, Miwa Kato , stat­ed at the occa­sion that the sur­vey illus­trat­ed the prob­lem of drug use and depen­dence in Nige­ria , as well as the lack of ser­vices to address the issues . She added that the report was also stag­ger­ing .

She said , “I believe the find­ings of the sur­vey will be a wake ‑up call for us and inter­na­tion­al actors involved in the drug response that the prob­lem is seri­ous and the busi­ness- as ‑usu­al approach will not work to address this grow­ing threat to Nige­ria ’s well- being and sta­bil­i­ty .

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