Chairman/Chief Executive Officer of the National Drugs Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), Buba Marwa, says kidnappers and armed bandits now ask for payment of ransoms in drugs.
Marwa disclosed this in Abuja at the inauguration of the Special Purpose Committee of the NDLEA, comprising 33 members and observers drawn from the Academia, Civil Society Practitioners in Drugs Rehabilitation, Medical Professionals, Youth, Women Groups, Religious Bodies and Public Advocacy Groups among others.
He warned that kidnapping would continue unless the nation gets to the root cause of the menace.
He said, “The use of drugs in Nigeria is getting to epidemic proportions with about 15 million approximately, nearly thrice the global prevalence.
“Unfortunately, drug use does not show in the face, so you won’t know if your next-door neighbour is doing drugs. However, we all know somebody or someone who knows somebody doing drugs.
“No wonder we have so much criminality everywhere in our land. And it is increasing instead of abating, starting with kidnapping, insurgency, banditry (North West), then moving to Niger. Now it has upgraded to rape and assassinations.
“Behind it all is drug use. Criminals all use drugs, even kidnappers now ask for ransom in drugs. Unless we get to this root cause, we will only be scorching at the surface as the criminalities will continue to flourish.
“I should also add that criminalities involve selling of drugs to fund their nefarious activities.”