The Chairman of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), Brig. Gen. Buba Marwa (Rtd), said the agency will seek the approval of the government to conduct drug tests on admission seekers into tertiary institutions. He said the test was necessary to checkmate the high rate of drug abuse in the country as the agency intensifies its war against drugs. Some Nigerians react. Excerpts:
Zahraddeen Yakubu Shuaibu, Kano, Usman Bello, Benin, Ibraheem Hamza Muhammad Lafia, Iniabasi Umo, Uyo, Jeremiah Oke, Ibadan
Habibi Waliyi Muhammad, 53, Trader, Lafia
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I support the statement by the new chairman of NDLEA, General Buba Marwa that students should take drug tests. This is a welcome idea as he is a father and a grandfather who wants drug abuse reduced in society. He also wants to safeguard the lives of the leaders of tomorrow. I have 5 children and I don’t want them and their peers associating with illegal drugs.
Jamilu Maiwada Yusuf, 50, Cobbler, Lafia
I support that students take drugs tests as advocated by NDLEA DG, Buba Marwa. I heard that recently, a public hospital recruited some doctors, but they ordered that they must undertake drugs tests, unfortunately, more than half of them were drug addicts. I urge Nigerians to support the call as it is one of the means to guarantee the future of our youth being mentally stable leaders, doctors, teachers amongst others.
Ahmed Aigbona, 40, SWAN President, Edo state
I don’t think it is a good idea. It will create another problem by portraying our students as drug addicts. We are producing global graduates and if a student who was tested positive for drug now travels abroad or is seeking a visa, once his or her name is put in the system it will show that he is a drug addict. So, I don’t think it is good.
Ibrahim Suwaid, 22, Student, Kano
I agree that the test is necessary because students drug testing has the potential to enhance health and safety in the school environment. Testing discourages people from abusing substances and thereby suffering any ill health effects and reducing the likelihood of accidents and injuries related to working/studying under the influence of the drug.
Hajara Muhammad Bashir, 23, Student, Kano
Students need to take drug tests due to the high intake of unprescribed drugs as a result of inadequate hospitals and pharmacies on the campus. Students showing abnormal behaviours should be tested in order to identify teens who have started using illicit drugs so that early interventions can start.
Patrick Titus, Public Servant, 50, Akwa Ibom
I do not support the idea because there are people who aren’t drug addicts. If you are not used to taking drugs, why would you want to take the test unless they have another meaning to it? If a student isn’t on drugs, why would it be suggested that he/she take the test? The idea should apply to those who have a drug-addicted lifestyle and not to all students.
Ukeme Patience Omonkhua, 25, Student, Akwa Ibom
I think the test is necessary so that the authorities are sure that the students aren’t into drugs. It is a nice idea and good development.
Dada Ayokha, 50, Lecturer, Edo state
The idea that students should undergo a drug test is probably based on the mantra of catching them Young. Actually, there is nothing wrong with it, especially for those from the final class in primary school level to a higher institution. It is evident that the younger ones are easy to be influenced by drug abuse, especially those who lack parental care. I don’t think it is a bad idea.
Rebecca Olasunbo Adaboyan, 37, Businessman, Ibadan
I don’t think it is necessary for all students to undergo the drug test. The government can only take on a suspected student who looks like a drug addict. But, saying every student will undergo a drug test, is a way of stealing our common wealth again. Our politicians will budget huge money for it and later steal it. In effect, everything will definitely bounce back on the parents because I am sure they will ask them to pay for the test.
Aminu Idris, 36, Civil Servant, Kano
I support the idea because it will motivate the youth to refrain from the habit of drug abuse. If you know that for you to get admission into school, there has to be a drug test, definitely that will encourage you to avoid the act. Another important issue is with regards to circulating the drugs abuse act in schools. This test will help institutions to avoid mixing drugs abusers and those who don’t use it, hence, it will prevent them from joining the habit. Obviously, many youths join drug abuse as a result of interacting with drug addicts.
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