First Lady of Nigeria, Aisha Buhari, bemoaned on Thursday that “one out of every four drug users is a woman,” as she urged traditional and religious organisations to intensify their activism against the problem.
She made this statement at a symposium on drug awareness in Abuja according to her spokesman, Sani Zorro.
The National Drugs Law Enforcement Agency; in partnership with the Initiative against Addiction and Substance Abuse in Nigeria (IAASAN) collaborated to organize the conference (NDLEA).
According to her, the 2021 joint survey of the National Bureau of Statistics; as well as the Centre for Research and Information on Substance Abuse (CRISA); supported by the United Nations Office of Drug and Crime (UNODC) was disturbing.
“Nigeria had 14.3 million out of its productive population engaged in drug abuse…The figure is projected to rise by 40 per cent, by the year 2030.
“This is approximately 20 million of our 200 million + population; unless there is deliberate, massive and collaborative intervention to stem the tide.”
Furthermore, Aisha Buhari asked stakeholders to work together to confront the problems brought on by drug usage in the nation.
“It is only by working together that we could avoid the tragedy and helplessness of nations severely impacted by the drug trade and associated crimes,” she said.
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She, therefore, emphasised the need for traditional and religious organisations to join the fight; specifically t to help tackle the menace of drug trafficking and addiction in Nigeria.
The First Lady also told the gathering that women have a vital role to play towards moulding the characters of their children for better upbringing.
“In this campaign, women can therefore serve as educators and motivators of the right attitudes that their children would emulate,” she said.
The first lady declared her willingness to help any effort to combat the threat.