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NICO Holds Annual Public Lecture, Cautions Youths Against Drug Abuse

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The National Institute for Cultural Orientation, NICO, has organized its Annual Public Lecture with the theme ” Culture, Drug Abuse and the Future of the Nigerian Youth”.

On the occasion in Abuja, the Guest Speaker and Chairman, National Drug Law Enforcement Agency, NDLEA, Brig. Gen. Buba Marwa (Rtd) expressed concern over the rate of drug abuse among some Nigerian youths.

The Chairman who was represented by the Director, Drug Demand Reduction in NDLEA, Dr. Ngozi Nwabudike said the Agency had over the years put in place strategies aimed at combating the use and consumption of illicit drugs among over fourteen million Nigerians most especially the youth.

While commending NICO for the choice of its this year’s topic of public lecture which centered on Culture, Drug Abuse and the Future of the Nigerian Youth, solicited the support of all stakeholders in the fight against drug abuse in the country.

In a remark, the Chairman, Senate Committee on Culture and Tourism, Senator Rochas Okorocha attributed youth involvement in drug abuse to lack of moral values and inability to believe in themselves for a better tomorrow.

Senator Okorocha therefore advised youths to shun drug abuse and always engage in positive ventures that would make them good ambassadors of their families and patriotic citizens of Nigeria.

Earlier, the Executive Secretary of the National Institute for Cultural Orientation, NICO, Mr Ado Yahuza said the Institute’s Public Lecture series is a veritable platform where eminent Nigerians and scholars engage in intellectual discussions on critical national issues from the culture standpoint.

“Previous editions of the Public Lecture addressed topical issues such as, “Cultural Variables in Managing Diversity in Nigeria”, Maintenance Culture: A Panacea for Sustainable Infrastructural Development in Nigeria”
, Culture as an Effective Tool for Foreign Relations”, Implementation of Sustainable development Goals in Nigeria: The Culture Dimension”.

According to him, this year’s edition of the Public Lecture on the topic: ”Culture, Drug Abuse and the Future of the Nigerian Youth” is a continuation of NICO’s strategic and sustained programme of public enlightenment, cultural sensitization and orientation designed to draw national attention to the alarming rate of drug and substance abuse especially among Nigerian youths and the urgent need for collective action in order to save Nigerian youths and the nation from the avoidable negative consequences.

“At this juncture, I wish to use this opportunity to commend the Executive Chairman/Chief Executive and management of Nigerian Drug Law Enforcement agency for the aggressive, proactive and effective manner it has executed its mandate in the last couple of years. The War Against Drug Abuse prosecuted by NDLEA has been a huge success considering the large number of arrest and convictions they have secured and it is pertinent to state here that as inspiring and amazing as the NDLEA story has been, there is still so much to be done and the Agency needs the support of all and sundry. Parents, teachers, religious leaders, civil society organizations and other critical institutions and stakeholders should play their role in addressing the menace” the Executive Secretary of NICO added.

In their goodwill messages, the Director General of National Broadcasting Commission, NBC, Mallam Balarabe Yussuf, the General Manager, National Theatre, Prof. Sunny Ododo and other Speakers including traditional ruler at the public lecture stressed the need for more stringent measures towards putting an end to an increasing rate of illicit drug abuse among Nigerians

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