over 21, 000 people have been convicted for drug trafficking.
The National Drugs Law Enforcement Agency, NDLEA, on Wednesday said it had seized over 3.4 million kilogrammes of narcotics in the country in the last 23 years.
The Sokoto State Commander of the agency, Misbahu Idris, said this at a news conference in Sokoto to mark the UN Day against drug abuse and illicit trafficking which holds annually on June 26.
Mr. Idris gave a breakdown of the figure as: 2. 8 million kg of cannabis; over 178, 000 kg of cocaine; 195,283 kg of heroin and 233,699 kg of other psychotropic substances.
According to him, the agency has also secured 21, 871 convictions of offenders during the period under review.
He added that the Sokoto State command of the agency had in the last six months seized 735 kg of hard drugs with 551 kg being cannabis sativa; and convicted 25 offenders, while 54 persons were successfully counselled and rehabilitated.
Mr. Idris commended the Sokoto State Government for spending N140 million on the renovation of the agency’s office and the construction of an ultra-modern rehabilitation centre, cells and exhibits’ rooms.
“This centre will help in our modest effort to counsel and rehabilitate drug victims, majority of whom are the youth. The ongoing drugs war is a collective one to be fought and won by the agency, governments at all levels and other stakeholders,” he said.
The Commissioner for Health in the state, Ahmed Aliyu, expressed government’s concern over rising cases of drug abuse in the society.
Represented by the acting Director of Pharmaceutical Services, Murtala Bello, the commissioner said, “We are doing everything humanly possible to urgently reverse the ugly trend. We are ready to partner with any agency, person or groups of persons in this direction.’’