17th February, 2014
Governor Rabi’u Musa Kwankwaso of Kano State, northwest Nigeria has said that his administration is winning the war against drug abuse and trafficking.
According to him, the battle launched against drug trafficking and abuse since the inception of his administration in 2011 is on course, “and nothing will deter us from prosecuting anyone engaged in selling illicit drugs or consuming them.”
The state governor, Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso disclosed this on Saturday during the graduation of 1st and 2nd batch of Inmates of Kano Reformatory Institute, Kiru held at the Government House lawn in Kano.
He said the administration is adopting a multi dimensional approach to solve the twin problems bedeviling the state, including public enlightenment, engagement of parents and other critical stakeholders as well as the establishment of two special task forces on proliferation of illicit drugs and medical consumables.
Kwankwaso further stated that the government established the Kiru Reformatory to rehabilitate and build the capacities of drug addicts, so that they can become responsible and productive citizens.
“These efforts are yielding positive results,” he noted, pointing out that seizures of abused drugs and substances as well as arrests of drug barons have increased significantly, while the rates of crime and accidents in Kano city, mostly resulting from drug abuse, have drastically reduced.
He emphasized that the government has taken decisive measures to ban unwholesome sale of drugs and other medical consumables in all parts of the state especially at Sabon Gari Market through NDLEA and NAFDAC.
“This has led to the confiscation and destruction of fake drugs worth over N3.3 billion and we shall remain resolute in this direction”, the governor stressed.
Speaking particularly on the graduating students of the reformatory, the governor explained that the instituted is being operated under a public-private partnership with some NGOs even as the government alone spent N30 million on training the 1st and 2nd batches of the inmates.
Kwankwaso told the graduands that”only you can most effectively lock up your minds and turn your back against the evil temptation. You all are capable of attaining the greatest height in any chosen career like piloting, medicine, pharmacy etc. but you cannot achieve anything through drug abuse and lawlessness.”
Also speaking, the State Commissioner of Police, Alhaji Adenrele T. Shinaba assured his command and state government would continue to work hand in hand with NDLEA and NAFDAC to ensure drug abuse free society.
CP Shinaba called on other states of the federation to emulate Kano by establishing a similar Institute to cater for drug addicts in their domains.
In his speech, the US Ambassador to Nigeria, Mr. James Entwistle mentioned that one nation by itself cannot tackle drug trafficking but the problem can be addressed with the collaboration of the international community.
Ambassador Entwistle, however, noted that fighting against drug barons is not enough but emphasis need to be placed on education and helping drug addicts to reclaim their lives just as Kano state government is doing.
He remarked that the US government has high degree cooperation with Nigeria’s drug agency, NDLEA adding that the relationship is yielding fruitful result.
In their separate remarks the state commissioner of Women Affairs and social development Binta Tijjani Jibril and the principal of the Kano Reformatory Institute, Dr. Ferdinand H. Ikwang, revealed that the inmates had under gone intensive screening and medical tests to determine the level of their problems, noting that the Institute has gave them psycho-social therapy with special consideration on spiritual guidance.