Drug control officers to combat drug abuse in Lagos schools

To combat the menace of drug abuse in schools, efficient drug regulation policies and appointment of drug-control officers in schools have been identified as crucial.

This was the consensus at a six-day training of the first batch of Principals of Lagos State on the “Universal Prevention Curriculum (UPC) for Substance Use Disorders,” held at Lagos State Model College, Meiran, Agbado.

The National Coordinator (UPC) and founder, Global Initiative on Substance Abuse (GISA), Dr. Martin Agwogie said such officers would be adequately trained on how to develop and implement evidence based substance abuse interventions in their respective schools.

Agwogie said: “Report from the 2018 national drug use survey shows that Lagos State has the highest number of persons who use drugs in Nigeria. This calls for urgent steps among stakeholders. This is not the time to sit on the fence. We must all rise to address this issue frontally to safeguard the younger generations.”

Permanent Secretary, Education District 1, Lagos State, Dr. Yinka Ayandele said the advocacy would be taken beyond school principals to parents and communities. She said the aim was to ensure that all hands are on deck towards eradication of drug abuse in the state.

Convener of the training and founder, Isaac Adetolu Foundation, Mr. Olatunde Isaac Adetolu, said the programme was undertaken to provide stakeholders with the evidence based prevention intervention theories and skills.Principal, Ifesowapo-Aboru Junior Secondary School, Aboru, Lagos, Mr. Bunmi Oyesanya said with the training, teachers would now be on top of the situation.