Benjamin Babine, Abuja
Nongovernmental organization (NGO), Christabel Initiatives has partnered with the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) and the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) to discourage Nigerian youths from drug abuse by rehabilitating and empowering drug abusers.
The founder of the NGO, Dr Christabel Okoye disclosed this at an event in Abuja themed “Youth Engagement for Global Action”, which was attended by over sixty youth leaders from across the country.
In her speech, Dr Okoye, encouraged youth leaders to help as mediators to help reach drug abusers in their various rural communities. She also spoke about how her foundation in conjunction with NDLEA and UNODC is helping to rehabilitate hundreds of youth and further proving them several opportunities to thrive.
She said: “As we are all aware, Youths are the pinnacle of our society, the bedrock of any nation and the leaders of tomorrow. It is very important we recognise and celebrate them, especially the youths that have impacted lives positively, they are very distinguished and have in different ways, paid a great price in making other youths proud and are worthy of emulation.
“No youth becomes relevant by living an irresponsible and nonchalant life.
History has not produced any drug abused youth who become a generational impact and a role model. Responsible youths are vision-full and focused people who would assume responsible positions of leadership tomorrow.”
She went on to disclose that the NGO will tour all thirty-six states in the country with the motive of discouraging drug usage and empowering youths by helping harness opportunities available for their various skills and talents.
A superintendent of narcotics at the NDLEA, Mr Kingsley Iyamu spoke about the agency’s support for the work the NGO is doing. He emphasized that the drug agency partnered with the NGO because of the positive impact it is making in the lives of youths.
He said: “We have come to encourage the youths to stay awar from drug abuse and to encourage them to venture into positive endeavors and not hard drug abuse which destroys lives. We enlighten them by telling them the dangers of drug abuse and the negative impact on their lives. We encourage people who want to come out of hard drug usage to visit our rehabilitation centers all around the country.
“We also make sure that we block all loopholes from which hard drugs come into the country. We have our enforcement, enlightenment and rehabilitation arms which help in curbing the menace of drug abuse. But today, we have come to emphasize the enlightenment and rehabilitation arms. We don’t want the youth to only see us as enforcers but we want them to also see us as rehabilitators who can help them.”