One million killer patent medicine stores in existence, says panel

No fewer than one million killer and fake patent medicine stores exist across the federation, the Chairman, Presidential Advisory Committee on Elimination of Drugs Abuse, Gen. Buba Marwa (rtd), disclosed yesterday in Yola.

During a courtesy visit to Governor Muhammadu Bindow of Adamawa State, he said the development was posing a great danger to the lives of over 180 million Nigerians.

“So far, there are over one million unregistered and killer patent medicine stores across Nigeria.

“Also only about 58,000 of such stores are registered in 36 states and Abuja,” the Lagos ex-military administrator stated.

Marwa deplored the high rate of drug abuse in the country, adding that there was need for concerted efforts to effectively tackle the menace.

The chairman noted that about 15 million adult Nigerians were on drugs, as the South West ranks tops with 22 per cent, followed by the South South (17 per cent), South East (15 per cent), and North East’s 13.8 per cent.

Others are North West with 13.4 per cent and North Central that accounts for eight per cent.

He urged state governments to establish permanent and standard rehabilitation centres to take care of the high number of drug addicts in need of help.

According to Marwa, they were in the state for a three -day stakeholders’ meeting.

In his remarks, Bindow, who was represented by the acting governor, Mr. Martins Babale, thanked President Muhammadu Buhari for constituting the advisory committee.

He advised that a state of emergency be declared on drug abuse in the country.

The governor noted that the situation was alarming and had reached a horrible stage that required a holistic approach.

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