Keeping modern societies safe from illicit drugs demands global commitment – Marwa


The Chairman/Chief Executive Officer of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency, NDLEA, Brig. Gen. Mohamed Buba Marwa (Retd) has said the task to keep modern societies safe from the scourge of illicit drugs, demands global commitment.

This is even as the anti-narcotic agency boss assured that Nigeria is doing everything possible to fulfil its own end of the bargain.

A statement issued on Friday by Femi Babafemi, the Director of Media and Advocacy, NDLEA Headquarters Abuja, indicated that Marwa made the assertions at the weekend while addressing a gathering of academics, students, mental health professionals and Nigerians in the diaspora at the Jayhawk Welcome Centre, University of Kansas, Lawrence, Kansas, United States.

The NDLEA boss, had, delivered a lecture on “War Against Substance Abuse and Illicit Drug Trafficking: The Nigerian Story” at the 2023 edition of the Marwa Africana Lecture Series established and organized annually since 2003 by the Department of African and African-American Studies of the University of Kansas.


Marwa said, “we have been able to keep a huge cache of drugs from getting into our streets by seizing them at the border or before distribution courtesy of intelligence sharing with our counterparts in source countries or along the transnational routes.”

“For some 33 months now, Nigeria has run an unflagging anti-illicit drug campaign based on global best practices for drug law enforcement and guided by UNODC’s Whole-of-Society approach to the drug conundrum.

“While we have achieved remarkable mileage, the Nigerian anti-drug campaign is nonetheless a work in progress. Be that as it may, our achievements of the past 30 months, relative to the past 30 years, have bolstered our hope of greater accomplishments going forward.

“The support from international partners, governments of friendly countries, the government of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, and the Nigerian people has strengthened our conviction that the objective we pursue is not unrealistic. Now we have before us an open vista where the objective of a drug-free society is a possibility.

“The task of keeping modern society safe from the scourge of illicit drugs requires a global commitment, and in NDLEA and Nigeria, we are doing everything possible to fulfil our end of the bargain.”

He said the choice of words for the campaign against illicit drugs in Nigeria “is a metaphor that is reflective of the need for drastic steps against a brewing illicit drug apocalypse.” He added that “War on drugs” within the Nigerian context connotes the severity of the situation as an existentialist threat to the Nigerian nation and the urgency and intensity of action required to bring the situation under control, adding that the campaign, is however, being conducted in accordance with global best practice.”

Marwa also revealed some of the strategic steps taken to get positive results by NDLEA. “In every facet of our activities, we endeavoured to adopt innovation. We upgraded our Standard Operating Procedures. We innovated our methodologies, adopted sophisticated tools and systems, and embraced revolutionary paradigms in treatment.

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