Shaibu warns youth against drug, substance abuse

Edo State Deputy Governor, Mr. Philip Shaibu, has urged Nigerian youth to stay away from abuse of drugs and substance as it is dangerous to their health and to the growth of the society.

Shaibu gave the charge, Tuesday, in Benin City, Edo State, when he received members of Association of Movie Directors led by the Edo State Chairman, Osaze Dickson, on a courtesy visit for endorsement of their upcoming movie, ‘The Dangers of Drug Abuse by Nigerian Youths’, in collaboration with the University of Benin Theatre Arts Department.

He said that the effects of drug abuse on the younger generation was inimical to their development, hence the need for a paradigm shift to address the challenge.

According to him, “Drug abuse has reduced the productivity of young people and is affecting their economic lives. Youth must learn to take their minds off drugs and stand up to say no to peers who may want to lure them into drug and substance abuse.”

“We must take this campaign against drug and substance abuse very seriously, in all nook and cranny of the state and our country, and not just the urban areas. I am ready to join in the campaign including physically walk against drug abuse.

“Let’s encourage and sensitize the young ones to shun activities such as drug abuse that can hinder them from actualising their dreams. Such beautiful dreams can only be actualized with a sound mind, and not an abused one.”

“To the youth: we need you, the society needs you; drug abuse will only destroy your dreams of becoming what you want to be in future. You have a great future, and that future can only be attained and achieved with a sound mind as the abuse of drugs can mess up with the brain of a young person,” Shaibu admonished.

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The Deputy Governor, however, thanked the Movie Directors and the UNIBEN Theatre Arts Department for “reawakening consciousness on the need to shun negative vibes, especially drug abuse” with their new movie.

“We thank you for coming up with a movie to sensitise, educate and empower young minds with information that will help them make the right choices.

Knowledge, they say, is power, so having the right information about the abuse of drugs and substances and how to stay clear of it cannot be overemphasised.”

“Drug and substance abuse can affect every aspect of a child’s life and also have a negative effect on society. So the earlier we nip it in the bud, the better for our youths and the society,” he said.

Shaibu also warned entertainers against negative peer pressure that could lead them to indulge in drug and substance abuse, saying “you don’t need any ‘enhancement drug’ or substance to get to the peak of your career.”

The Deputy Governor subsequently endorsed the movie awareness campaign, and reassured that his office is open to collaborating with all relevant stakeholders in the fight against drug abuse.

He, however, tasked all stakeholders to continue to evolve strategies targeting youth and implement well-thought-out interventions to achieve a drug abuse-free society, adding that the fight against drug abuse is a collective responsibility of all citizens.

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