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NDLEA, Others Launch National Drug Control Master Plan 2021-2025

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The Government of Nigeria has officially launched the National Drug Control Master Plan (NDCMP) 2021-2025. The event was attended by several cabinet ministers, members of the Inter-Ministerial Committee on Drug Control, NDLEA Chairman’s Special Purpose Committee on Drugs, the diplomatic corps, as well as diverse group of stakeholders.

Developed with the support of the European Union funded, and UNODC implemented project “Response to Drugs and Related Organized Crime in Nigeria”, the NDCMP 2021-2025 is the final product of a coordinated effort comprising experts from relevant government ministries, departments and agencies as well as civil society organizations. The Plan marks a significant evolution from the previous three NDCMPs, as it was able to draw on an extensive evidence base, including the first ever National Drug Use Survey conducted by the National Bureau of Statistics with the support of UNODC in 2018. The survey revealed an average drug use prevalence of more than 14% which is alarmingly high when compared with the global prevalence of 5.5%.
The survey also found that almost 3 million persons in Nigeria were suffering from some form of drug use disorder. Other research studies on prevalence of drug use among internally displaced persons (IDPs), migrants, students, out of school children, and women, also helped in shaping critical interventions for the Plan.
In his remarks, the Special Guest of Honour HAGF & Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, SAN highlighted the critical importance of NDCMP 2021-2025 in providing a clear roadmap for implementing country strategies on all aspects of drug control. The Minister of Women Affairs expressed her concerns about one in four drug users being a woman or a girl and hoped that gender concerns would be adequately addressed during implementation of the Plan. The Minister of Youth and Sports Development proposed to engage National Youth Service Corp ( NYSC ) in drug prevention and sensitization work.
Speaking on the occasion, Mr. Alexandre Borges Gomes, Charge d Affaires, EU Delegation to Nigeria and ECOWAS, stated that “a balanced approach to issues of drug control” containing both soft and hard measures is the most viable way forward and commended Nigeria for developing such a Plan.
Quoting different research studies conducted on drugs in Nigeria, including the Drug use Survey 2018, the UNODC Representative in Nigeria, Mr. Oliver Stolpe stressed on the strong evidence-base available for the development of this Plan, “an opportunity, that was not available at the time of development of previous three plans … hence NDCMP 2021-2025 would create superior impact”
Representing Chairman NDLEA Brig. Gen. Mohamed Buba Marwa (Rtd), OFR, Secretary NDLEA, Mr. Shadrach Haruna expressed his agency’s resolve in implementing the NDCMP in close coordination with all the concerned ministries, agencies and departments. He further thanked the European Union for gracious funding and the UNODC for providing technical and advisory support through all stages.
The development of the NDCMP 2021-2025, its endorsement by the President of Nigeria, and its launch today, are significant milestones in Nigeria’s progress towards addressing drug control issues in a more focused, systematic and evidence-based fashion. The plan marks a significant shift away from an approach predominantly aimed at supply reduction to a more balanced and health-centred approach to drug control. The recent initiatives on restructuring of the NDLEA directorates and the upgrading of the Narcotics and Drug Abuse Unit within the Federal Ministry of Health (FMOH) to a full-fledged Division, are also important reflections of this shift in the priority setting of the country’s drug control effort.
The implementation of NDCMP 2021-2025 will contribute to achieving Sustainable Development Goal (SDG)-3 to “ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages” and target 3.5 to “strengthen prevention and treatment of substance abuse, including narcotic drug abuse and harmful use of alcohol, as well as SDG-16 to “promote just, peaceful and inclusive societies.”

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Group Calls For Protection Of Journalists In Bayelsa, Imo, Kogi States

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The Media Rights Agenda (MRA) has urged for necessary measures to protect journalists and other media workers during this weekend’s off-cycle elections in Bayelsa, Imo, and Kogi States.

The group sent the request to the federal and state governments, as well as law enforcement and security agencies, stressing that the role of journalists in disseminating information about the electoral process is critical to ensuring free, fair, and transparent elections.

In a statement issued ahead of the elections in Lagos and signed by the Communications Officer, Media Rights Agenda, Idowu Adewale, MRA also urged journalists to be cautious and to use its existing hotline (08138755660) to report any threat or attack they may encounter during the process, as well as any obstacle.

Adewale said in the statement: “Given the pattern of heightened attacks on journalists and the media during previous elections, including the recent 2023 general elections, as well as the tense political climate in the three states in the lead-up to the elections, measures must be taken to ensure general security during the elections and provide adequate protection for journalists covering the elections.”

“Access to information allows citizens and other members of the public to have the information they need about political and electoral processes, facilitating effective public participation in elections,” he says.

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“Journalists and the media play an important role in ensuring residents and other members of the public have access to information and may participate in the process.

“As part of efforts to preserve the integrity of the polls, it is also critical that the safety and well-being of these interlocutors be assured and safeguarded.”

Lamenting the increased number of attacks on journalists in the run-up to the off-cycle elections, as well as earlier this year in the run-up to the general elections, he emphasised that “a free and vibrant media is fundamental to a healthy democracy, and journalists must be able to carry out their duties without fear, coercion, or violence.” During this vital phase, MRA stands ready to assist them and assure their safety.”

 

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CRIME

Police Nab Husband, As Mother Of ‘Mummy Be Calming Down’ Boy Takes Own Life

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Men from the Edo State Police Command are said to have detained Mrs. Toluige Olokoobi’s husband after he allegedly murdered her.

Olokoobi was the mother of Oreofeoluwa Lawal-Babalola, the tiny boy whose video went viral in 2020 after he pleaded with his mother, “Mummy be calming down.”

Oreofeoluwa rose to prominence on social media after a video of him crying in an attempt to confidently appeal to his mother, who chastised him, went viral.

The film inspired Lagos State Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu, who used it to deliver an Eid-el-Kabir appeal to Muslims and Lagos people in general to remain calm during the COVID-19 outbreak.

Following that, the youngster and his family met with the governor, who praised his bravery and poise.

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While little has been heard about the family in three years, heartbreaking news broke on social media on Tuesday that the boy’s mother had committed suicide.

According to an X user, Olokoobi committed suicide in Benin, the capital of Edo State, for unknown reasons.

The X user, who stated that he was present at the site on Monday afternoon, went on to say that she had refused to disclose her difficulties with anyone before committing herself.

“The woman in the viral Mummy Calm Down video has just committed suicide here in Benin,” he stated in an email.

“She refused to discuss her problems with anyone.” She abandoned three children for her husband, including the well-known Mummy Calm Down boy.”

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Meanwhile, confirming Olokoobi’s death in a chat with BBC Pidgin, the spokesperson of the Edo State police command, Chidi Nwabuzor, said her husband has been arrested and detained for questioning.

Nwabuzor said the husband reported the matter to the police.

The police spokesperson quoted the husband to have said that “he came home from the market when he saw his wife hanging with rope on her neck”.

Nwabuzor said she was rushed to the hospital and then to the mortuary after she was confirmed dead. (Adapted from a Vanguard report).

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CRIME

Anambra: CP Aderemi Adeoye Decorates Promoted Officers With New Ranks

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The Anambra State Police Command Headquarters Conference Hall was a hive of activity Thursday as CP Aderemi Adeoye took turns decorating around 18 promoted officers of the command with their new titles.

The delight of some of the officers whose wives assisted the CP in decorating their husbands with their new ranks knew no bounds, as their husbands duly saluted their wives and the CP for their new positions and responsibilities.

Obi Innocent, one of the officers elevated to the rank of Chief Superintendent of Police (CSP), whose wife joined CP Aderemi Adeoye in adorning him with his new rank, said it was wonderful that the Inspector General of Police thought him worthy.

CSP Obi Innocent, the officer in charge of the Legal Department at Zone 13, Police Zonal Headquarters Ukpo, stated that his new rank was a call to service and that he would do his best to uphold the charge given to them by CP Aderemi Adeoye to respect and protect the citizenry’s fundamental rights in the discharge of their new assignments.

Charity Akharame, who was honoured with the rank of Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) and was the only female officer among the 18 promoted officers decorated with new ranks, said it was not an easy feat but she was grateful to be among those who were decorated with their new ranks.

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DSP Charity Akharame, the officer in charge of stores in the Anambra State Police Command, recalled how she began as a Police Constable and worked her way up to her current position as Deputy Superintendent of Police.

She stated that as a very disciplined police officer, she would follow the Police Commissioner’s directions regarding respect for all and sundry in the fulfillment of her constitutional obligations.

Jane-Frances Obi, one of the spouses of the officers elevated to the level of CSP, stated that being the wife of a police officer was not an easy assignment. As a result, she recommended any lady who is married to a police officer to be patient and understanding because the job is quite demanding.

Jane-Frances Obi, whose husband is Innocent Obi, the officer in charge of the Legal Department at Zone 13 Ukpo, believes the promotion is a reward for years of being patient, understanding, and standing in for them when they are not present.

Meanwhile, Emenike Chinenyenwa, who was decorated with the rank of Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) and presented a vote of appreciation, expressed deep gratitude to the IGP and the Chairman of the Police Service Commission for considering them worthy of being adorned in their new ranks.

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ACP Emenike, the officer in charge of Medicals, stated that the elevation comes with increased responsibility and that they will work harder in their new tasks.

CP Aderemi Adeoye praised the current promotion winners in his remarks, noting that two aspects make the police career very interesting and eventful. He stated that one is for promotion and the other is for positions.

CP Adeoye, on the other hand, urged the newly honored officers to develop more empathy, compassion, care, and dedication in the performance of their jobs.

The police chief insisted that newly promoted officers must first recognise that they share the same humanity as others, and as a result, they must treat all people with dignity and protect their fundamental human rights at all times.

CP Aderemi Adeoye stressed that without the enormous roles of spouses, they wouldn’t have been successful in their careers. He therefore congratulated all the promoted and prayed that God gives them good health to enjoy the new ranks and the energy to discharge the responsibilities of their new offices.

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  • Source: Independent

 

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