Nigeria Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) has revealed that female students in most Nigerian universities abuse hard drugs more than their male counterparts.
The Spokesperson of Anambra State command of the agency, Mr. Charles Odigie, who disclosed this, said the situation was unfortunate, but was the reality staring the society in the face.
Odigie, who was speaking during a one-day symposium tagged ‘curbing school dropout and drug abuse’ in Awka, the Anambra State capital, said the malaise was more prevalent in a university in Awka.
He said that from the command’s recent arrests of drug offenders in the state, female students of a university (name withheld) constituted most of the offenders, harping on the need for re-orientation.
Odigie regretted the general high rate of drug abuse in tertiary institutions, saying it was an indication that students allow themselves to be influenced in the school environment, where they have more freedom.
According to him:-
“There is high rate of drug abuse in tertiary institutions due to the absence of school hostels on campuses, making it difficult to control students who abuse these substances.
“For instance, majority of UNIZIK students live off-campus in lodges where neither the landlords nor caretakers are there to control them. If they are to be within the school premises, the story would have been different.”
He identified shisha, a popular local hard drug consumed by youths through pipes, as the most widely abused by the female students.
Odigie said the failure of parents to care and monitor their children’s activities in the tertiary institutions was one of the contributory factors to the high rate of social ills in the society, while tasking parents not to leave the training of their wards to teachers alone.
“We’ll however continue to sensitise the public on the dangers of drug abuse, urging other government agencies and NGOs to gear their activities towards the sensitisation of the masses on drug abuse, and encourage people to always report cases of abuse to the command,” he said.