The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) Edo State Command on Monday disclosed that the command seized 4,225.96kg of psychotropic drugs from unauthorised persons between 2015 and 2023.

The Edo State Commander, NDLEA, Buba Wakawa made this known during the 2023 sensitisation seminar for members of the Nigerian Association of Patent and Proprietary Medicine Dealers (NAPPMED) in Benin.

The News Agency of Nigeria NAN reports that the theme of the workshop is: “The role of NAPPMED in the war Against Drug Abuse”.

The Sensitisation, organised by the Edo command of the NDLEA, attracted participants drawn from across Edo South Senatorial District.

The event would also be carried out in Edo North and Central Senatorial districts on May 23 and 24.

Speaking further, Wakawa noted that the seminar was part of the command’s renewed efforts toward curtailing the increasing wave of drug abuse in the state.

He listed some of the psychotropic drugs including tramadol, Diazepam, Pentazocine, Rophynol and codeine-based cough syrups.

” These drugs have been found to be drugs of choice for perpetrators of violent crimes, apart from the hard drugs,” he said.

Wakawa also stated that a national survey conducted in 2018 revealed that about 14.3 million Nigerians, mostly youths, abused drugs with a prevalence of 14.4 per cent.

He added that the figure was alarming when compared with the world drug prevalence of five per cent.

” NAPPMED, being a critical stakeholder and the most common drug sales outlet in all communities, especially in the interior, is therefore paramount in our efforts towards curbing the illegal sale of controlled drugs.

“NAPPMED members must think beyond business and monetary benefits, be professional and restrict themselves to sales of only over-the-counter drugs,” he added

He thereafter, called on the association to collaborate with NDLEA to curb the incessant sales of the drugs to save the youth and the society.

Also, the Assistant Commander General of Narcotics, NDLEA Zonal command, Zone M, Yenagoa, Fidel Cocodia, thanked the Edo command for putting the seminar together.

Cocodia noted that NAPPMED had been a major partner with the agency in tackling the twin problems of drug abuse and illicit trafficking in Nigeria.

He called on NAPPMED executives to ensure that their members did not become channels for the distribution of controlled drugs.

The President of NAPPMED, Edo chapter, Mr Sylvester Ebojele, thanked the NDLEA for the seminar with a promise to enforce the war against drug abuse among its members.

Ebojele explained that his administration had inaugurated a state task force to check the excesses of members and the sale of illicit drugs in the state.