Obinna Odogwu, Abakaliki
Youths of Umuhuali community in Ishielu Local Government Area of Ebonyi State, at the weekend, banned the sale, usage and consumption of all types of hard drugs in the area.
The resolution to do away with hard drugs which they described as dangerous was reached at a general meeting which they held in the community.
They said the decision became necessary as the sales and usage of the substances had caused them more harm than good.
The action of the young people came barely a week after the state government placed a ban on the over-the-counter sales of antibiotics, analgesics, and other similar drugs; a practice which it said would pose a huge health risk to the people of the state.
The ban was announced by the Senior Special Assistant to Governor David Umahi on Health Services, Dr. Sunday Nwangele, while briefing newsmen on the outcome of the state executive council meeting held in Government House, Abakaliki, that week.
“The governor has declared a total ban on tramadol, codeine and codeine-containing products in Ebonyi State. Furthermore, there is also a restriction on the sale antibiotics and analgesics over the counter.
“From now henceforth, it is expected that antibiotics and analgesics are sold following a doctor’s prescription note”, he said.
But explaining the rationale behind the ban, leader of the youths, Mr. Aliogboji Chukwu, explained that their action became necessary in order to queue behind the efforts of the state government to rid the state of cultism and hard drugs misuse.
He warned that any youth caught patronising the drugs would be prosecuted in accordance with the law even as he advised drug addicts to turn a new leaf or get set to face the wrath of the law.
He disclosed that committee has been set up and dispatched to the nooks and crannies in the area to fish out drug dealers and consumers from their hideouts for arrest and prosecution.