The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), Plateau Command, said it seized 1,510 bottles of cough syrup and 824 kilogrammes of hard drugs in a recent raid on drug stores.
Its Commander, Dr Ngozi Madubuike, made this known in an interview with newsmen in Jos on Sunday. She said the drug stores raided were in Jos-Bukuru metropolis, adding that the NDLEA officers also confiscated psychotropic substances.
She said the syrup was seized because it contained codeine, noting that it was a controlled drug and was not meant to be sold over the counter.
“We have been able to raid some drug stores and chemists in Jos-Bukuru metropolis who are not supposed to sell such drugs over the counter because the drugs are controlled drugs. They are to be sold by qualified medical personnel, not just by any person because the drugs are controlled; the diversion of these drugs makes them accessible to those who abuse them. From our findings, such persons take the drugs as stimulants because of the codeine in it which is a narcotic drug used medically for the production of some cough syrup,’’ she said.
She lamented that most youths who were into drugs buy the cough syrup not to treat cough “but to make them high and prepare them for nefarious activities.’’
Madubuike revealed that the command had earlier seized 824.517 kilogrammes of cannabis, cocaine and psychotropic substances.
The commander said the office has been able to secure the conviction of 48 males between the ages of 17 to 56 years, who she said are serving various jail terms ranging from one month to three years.
According to her, the command’s rehabilitation centre rehabilitated and discharged 34 male patients between January and now.
He said that there are about 26 people at the centre receiving treatment at the moment and called on parents to monitor their children and wards to ensure that they do not depend on or peddle drugs.
The NDLEA official, who identified notorious drug flash points to include Farin-Gada, Gada-Biyu, Congo-Russia, Mangu and Bukuru, appealed to the public to co-operate with the agency by providing vital information.