The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), Akwa Ibom State Command says it has concluded plans to establish a “Martha Udom Drug-free Club” in 500 secondary schools across the state to address the increasing wave of drug abuse among youths and adolescents in schools.
This position was made known Wednesday, April 14, 2021, when State Commander of the Agency, Mrs. Obot Bassey led top management staff of the body on a courtesy visit to the governor’s wife at Government House, Uyo.
Mrs. Bassey said having taken cognizance of the governor’s wife resolve to better the lives and shape the future of youths through her pet project FEYReP, it was imperative to collaborate with her to catch the young ones at their formative stage.
The state NDLEA boss added that the establishment of the drug-free club in schools has proven to be an effective tool in drug abuse prevention education in Nigeria, saying it helps create awareness among students on the adverse effect of drugs on the individual user.
According to her, “Drug-free clubs help in creating a positive mindset among adolescents and youths in their prime while also creating a sense of belonging among members to identify with the ideals of the club, thus serving as potential influencers on others to maintain drug and crime-free lifestyles in their lives.”
She on the other hand appreciated Dr. Martha Emmanuel’s unrelenting support against drug abuse in the state, saying it was the Command’s belief that most of the criminal activities and social vices in the state are drug-induced.
In her response, the Wife of Akwa Ibom State governor, Her Excellency Dr. Martha Udom Emmanuel while thanking the group for the partnership, said it was of huge concern to her that drug abuse has crept into secondary schools.
She said this informed her pet project’s decision to take up the challenge of sensitizing young boys in secondary schools against drug abuse through its initiative tagged “Raising Responsible Boys for the Future”.
Dr. Emmanuel expressed dismay that some parents who are supposed to have watchful eyes over their wards have abdicated their roles as caregivers in the family, hence allowing their young children to engage in hard drugs consumption which portends danger for their wellbeing.
“I am always sad whenever I see a young boy or girl engaged in drug abuse and its related crimes; it shows how parents have failed in their duties as caregivers. Parents must look after their kids, ask questions and engage in healthy conversations with them at all times to know when they are drifting apart,” the First Lady remarked.