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Group recommends public health approach to tackle drug abuse

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A non-governmental Organisation, YouthRise Nigeria has recommended the adoption of public health approach to tackling drug abuse in Nigeria. 

The group, at the forefront of drug policy reform advocacy in the country, in a statement yesterday, in Abuja, by its Advocacy Project Manager, Oluseyi Kehinde noted that the recommendations made by the Presidential Advisory Committee on the Elimination of Drug Abuse (PACEDA) on launching “War Against Drug Abuse (WADA)” should be considered.

According to him, drug use has now been globally recognised as a public health issue, and was expressly entrenched in the outcome of the UN General Assembly Special Session on Drugs in 2016.

He added that this same principle was also affirmed by ministers and government representatives, who participated in the ministerial segment of the 62nd session of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs chaired by Nigeria. 

Kehinde said: “The language of “War”, as often used in drug control response, is often synonymous with repressions and measures that do not conform with human rights standards. These are not in sync with what public health principles truly hold. 

“More so, as evidence has shown, such a war becomes a war on people who use drugs and get expressed in many forms, such as police brutality, denial of health services, stigmatisation, forced detention in the name of treatment and many more.”


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