The National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control says it has seized two trucks laden with tramadol.
The Director-General of NAFDAC, Prof. Moji Adeyeye, disclosed this at the public launch of drug-related health policies and guidelines in Abuja on Monday.
At the event tagged, ‘The National Policy for Controlled Medicines, National Guidelines for the Estimation of Psychotropic Substances and Precursors and National Minimum Standards for Drug Dependence Treatment in Nigeria’, the NAFDAC boss said the tramadol would have been sold to youths.
Adeyeye said, “Using drugs is centrally controlled or central nervous system-based which means it hits the brain immediately and it changes the user to somebody else. During the first use and second use, the brain of the user becomes very different because of dependence.
“They are no longer able to control themselves and that is where the crime, terrorism comes in. Therefore, please let the word go out that drug use comes with consequences.
“Of course, we are going after the peddlers. As we speak, we just intercepted two lorries full of tramadol this morning. And where are they going? They are going to the Ajegunles of Nigeria, to the Kanos of Nigeria. Who are they targeting? Our children. Therefore, we need to all come in. It’s our business.”
The NAFDAC boss said many youths were dying of drug overdose because it was very easy for them to access addictive drugs.
She also called on the National Assembly to amend the law such that drug peddlers could be given stiffer penalties.
“There are prosecutions and there are arrests. However, personally speaking, the sentences are very mild. We need stiffer sentences. There was a case in which someone was sentenced to one and a half years or a fine of N200,000. Is N200,000 enough to pay for a life?” Adeyeye said.
She said NAFDAC would be recruiting young pharmacists to visit secondary schools across the country to warn them of the repercussion of drug abuse including the misuse of prescription medications like codeine.