The National Orientation Agency (NOA) in Lagos State has launched a campaign to sensitize youths against drug addiction, political thuggery and other forms of violent extremism.
Speaking at the occasion, Lagos State Director of NOA, Mr. Waheed Ishola, urged parents to wake up to their responsibilities of instilling good morals in their children.
The NOA boss also urged the youth to eschew the use of drugs to reduce the level of criminality in the society.
“The use of drugs by our youths is on the increase and has become alarming; it is drugs that predisposes them to commit crime such as kidnapping, banditry, robbery which has now become an order of the day,” he said.
He said that the campaign was launched in Mushin because the area was noted for illicit drugs, political thuggery and other social vices.
In his goodwill message, Chairman of Mushin Local Government, Emmanuel Bamgboye, said criminal incidence was rampant in Mushin because of the population density and volatile nature of the area.
“We are sure that Mushin will be better at the end of this programme and the forthcoming election will be seamless,” he said.
In her lecture, Mrs. Titilope Ogunluyi, Assistant State Commander for Drug Demand Reduction at National Drug, Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) in Lagos, charged parents to give their children good home training.
Ogunluyi said though training of a child is a collective responsibility, women had a vital role to play in training the child to boost their self esteem and shape the society.
“Charity begins at home; there is nothing as ‘area boy’ as they are called but it is ‘area father or mother’ because it is the parents who have failed in their responsibility to bring up the child in a Godly way,” she said.
She said NDLEA was addressing the menace holistically by synergizing with sister agencies in making arrest and seizure to reduce supply of illicit substances.
Deputy Commissioner of Police, Operations, Lagos State Command, Ahmed Kontangora, also called for serious legislation on the sale and use of drugs, tobacco, alcohol to teenagers and youths.
Kontangora said that suppliers of the drugs were the most culpable element in the chain of the distribution of drugs
According to him, the police in Lagos had embarked on massive raids on criminal hideout and concentration to stem the tide.
He said if youths were positively engaged and empowered, it would go a long way to discourage them from doing drugs and in turn develop the nation.
More than 150 participants comprising youths, women group, civil society, the disabled, community development associations, artisans attended the programme.