The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency has commended some House of Representatives members for debating a bill that sought to legalize the cultivation, sale, and use of cannabis, also known as marijuana, for commercial purposes while at odds with three of their colleagues.
The head of the NDLEA reacted to the news on Friday, saying that the rejection of the bill by a majority of the legislature would further solidify the progress already made in the country’s relaunched fight against drug abuse and trafficking.
He asserts that the fact that 10.6 million Nigerians misuse cannabis, as reported in the 2018 drug survey, alone should raise concerns. He also asserts that there is undeniable evidence linking drug abuse to the nation’s widespread security issues.
“Today, insecurity is a serious illness with a wide range of symptoms, including insurgency, banditry, kidnapping, murder, robbery, retaliation killings, and more. But no administration has ever been more dedicated to putting an end to this recent wave of insecurity than President Muhammadu Buhari’s.
“The President has combined political will with resources, but the magnitude and frequency of these acts of destabilization and the audacity shown by the perpetrators demand a second, critical look at the ailment.
“Due to the problem’s persistence, we now find ourselves in a position where we must begin to consider potential outside factors that might be supporting the resistance from the criminal elements and attempt to make connections between them.
“The permutations will result in a list of probable causes, which will include using and abusing illegal drugs. In the end, drug abuse is undoubtedly one of the causes of insecurity. Nigeria cannot therefore afford to support the production, distribution, and use of the most widely used illegal substance.
This is the reason why the decision by the honorable members of the House of Representatives to reject the reintroduction of the cannabis bill is a welcome and uplifting news to us in the NDLEA and the Nigerian public, especially parents who daily and silently struggle with the pains of witnessing millions of their children and wards perish under the devastating effects of cannabis abuse. “.
Marwa claimed that those who stood by parents to defend them and their kids from legislation that would turn Nigeria into a nation of addicts and criminals would go down in history as heroes who took one step forward and ten steps back in the current situation.
Don’t forget that the bill that Miriam Onuoha, Olumide Osoba, and Benjamin Kalu jointly sponsored was defeated by the House on Thursday.
All those who spoke at the bill’s second reading on Thursday, aside from the sponsors and Speaker Femi Gbajabiamila, were against it.
Due to opposition, the proposal’s sponsors were compelled to ask that it be put on hold while it is being reviewed. The lawmakers unanimously agreed with their request.