Home News Drug use among African youth to hit 40% by 2030 – UNODC

Drug use among African youth to hit 40% by 2030 – UNODC

by Haruna Gimba
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By Muhammad Amaan

The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) predicts a 40 per cent increase in drug use in Africa by 2030, based on the continent’s growing youth population.

The Director, Media and Advocacy, NDLEA Headquarters in Abuja, Femi Babafemi, made this known in a statement after a press conference to kick off the week-long activities to celebrate the 2024 International Day Against Drugs and Illicit Trafficking, in conjunction with other stakeholders like the UNODC.

UNODC Country Deputy Representative, Mr. Danilo Campisi, said the projection is based on the population of young people on the continent.

He also lamented that the increase is extremely concerning considering that 2030 is only six years away.

He said, “Projections show that by 2030, there will be a 40 per cent increase in the use of drugs in Africa, based on the population of young people. This is extremely concerning if we consider that 2030 is only six years away.

He said UNODC has worked with the government of Nigeria to adapt and implement evidence-based prevention measures, which include the highly successful ‘UNPLUGGED,’ a school-based Drug Prevention Programme implemented together with the Federal Ministry of Education, in 110 Unity Schools and a few states in the country, notably Kebbi, Bayelsa and recently, Kaduna, on the initiative of the State Governments in these states.

Earlier, the Chairman and Chief Executive, NDLEA, Brigadier General Mohamed Buba Marwa (rtd) justified the decision of the anti-narcotics body to go after the assets of drug barons and traffickers as part of ongoing offensive action against illicit drugs and cartels.

The NDLEA boss, represented by the agency secretary, Mr Shadrach Haruna stated, “Permit me to share with you that our offensive action against drug cartels and traffickers, launched in January 2021, has to date continued to yield the desired result with the arrests and prosecutions of several barons. As you are all aware, two serial traffickers got life imprisonment in court in April.

“Our prosecution efforts have continued to achieve successes in courts given the painstaking investigations and diligence in the prosecution of cases. Our water-tight case preparations are unassailable. This has been further strengthened by our forfeiture regime with the passage of the Proceeds of Crime Act (POCA 2022).

He added, “Apart from conviction, the assets of the convicts used as instrumentality of the crime or the proceeds derived from the crime would be forfeited to the federal government.

“Indeed, a civil action in rem could be maintained against assets reasonably suspected to be proceeds of crime in which case the burden of proving the licit origin of the asset would be on the defendant who claims ownership of the asset. This diligent and painstaking preparation of investigations and prosecutions explains the success of the high conviction rate.”

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