Mrs Ngozi George, the Executive Director, Daniel Nwankwo Foundation, says educating teachers on drug-related issues is key to saving youths from drug abuse.
George, also a member, Abia State Drug Control Committee, said that the fight against drugs would be more meaningful if lecturers and teachers reach out to students caringly.
She said this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria on the sideline of a two-day sensitisation training on drugs and drug abuse prevention, treatment and care in Aba on Wednesday.
“The challenges associated with drugs misuse are a global phenomenon that has grown to become a major public health problem in Nigeria.
“Nigeria was formally considered to be a transit country for illicit drugs before the year 2013, but now it has become internationally recognised as a user nation as well.
“This means that more commitment and effort are required to bring the issue of drug abuse to the barest minimum in Nigeria,” she said.
Mr Eze Eluchie, the Executive Director, People Against Drug Dependence and Ignorance, Lagos, a resource person at the workshop, said the programme was a Federal Government plan.
“The programme is a federal government project meant to check the overwhelming drug problem in Nigeria.
“Research had shown that where attention should be paid to address increasing cases of drug abuse in our society is mainly in schools and work places,” he said.
He said they were hopeful that other schools and institutions of higher learning would key into the project to expand the programme to generally address the drug problem in Nigeria.
Eluchie regretted that it was not easy being a parent now because family values of the 60s are no longer the same today, hence the increase in youth drug abuse problems.
“To win the fight against drug abuse, parents should nurture their children the best way they can.
“They should make their home a conducive environment, open up communication channels and sustain it so that the children can reach out to their parents if they have issues.
“In any family where there is proper communication between the parents and children, societal vices are always absent.
“A talking and sharing family is always a sharing family, so parents are always encouraged to talk and communicate with their children.
“This is one of the ways we can fight the scourge of drug abuse from the roots which we must do, if we must win the fight,” he said.