Posted by News Express | 9 December 2013 | 3,184 times
The Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA) has urged the National Drugs Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) to increase the intensity of its campaign and improve on its strategies in the war against illicit drug. The group also canvassed better legislation by the National Assembly to provide for stiffer penalties for drug barons including a life sentence to serve as deterrent.
“The current legal regime against hard drugs trafficking is too lenient and unsustainable for a country that has come under unprecedented violence from a range of freelance armed hoodlums prodded on by their habit of drug addiction,” HURIWA argued in a statement jointly endorsed by the National Coordinator, Comrade Emmanuel Onwubiko, and the National Director of Media. Miss Zainab Yusuf.
HURIWA also called on NDLEA to embark on intensive enlightenment campaigns and to commence the aggressive rehabilitation of drug addicts, “especially the younger populations whose numbers are increasing in leaps and bounds.” The rights group believes that because NDLEA has done practically nothing to change the orientation of thousands of young drug addicts, social and violent crimes have skyrocketed in recent times across the country.
HURIWA also wants the governors of the 36 states and the Minister of the Federal Capital Territory to partner with the NDLEA “to stamp out hard drug addiction that has become a hydra headed monster tearing our younger populations apart and pushing them into organised violent crime and social misdemeanor’. The group said that the lip service paid the anti-hard drugs campaign by the political administrators across the country is similar to playing with a dangerous fire that is capable of consuming the nation.
HURIWA also tasked NDLEA to partner with sister governmental and credible NGOs to wage unrelenting enlightenment crusade in schools across the country on the hazards of drug addiction and also create a national crime data bank of all the convicted drug barons and the traffickers as an effective mechanism for naming and shaming these drug barons and keep innocent but vulnerable members of the public from being recruited for the dastardly criminal acts of drug trafficking.
HURIWA lamented that “several years after the creation of the NDLEA the institution is yet to create the significant national impact by way of making the diverse communities and groups across the country to own the process of waging war against hard drugs and actively partner in the fight against drug trafficking and addiction.” The rights group wants “the federal government and, by extension, the National Assembly, to significantly increase the funding capacity of the NDLEA and compel it to financially and technically empower community and civil society leaders and stakeholders in the 36 states of the federation and the Federal Capital Territory to kick start a national anti-hard drugs crusade.”
HURIWA alleged that NDLEA has not come clean regarding the transparent burning of hard drugs confiscated from arrested hard drugs traffickers. It wants the National Assembly to mandate the NDLEA to ensure that the public burning of the confiscated hard drugs are observed by tested and trusted statesmen and women including leaders of the civil society, the media and community based organisations.
•Photo shows NDLEA Chairman, Alhaji Ahmadu Giade.
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