Former Lagos State Military Administrator, Buba Marwa, has responded to a call by Ondo State Governor, Rotimi Akeredolu for the Federal Government to legalise the growing of Cannabis in Ondo State.
Governor Akeredolu had called on the Federal Government to support the growing of medicinal cannabis, also known as Indian hemp, in large quantity in Ondo State.
According to the governor, the cannabis industry was capable of creating thousands of jobs for youths and enhances the economic diversification of the country.
However, Marwa, who is the Chairman of the Presidential Advisory Committee for the Elimination of Drug Abuse, PACEDA, in a statement on Friday, warned that the call is counter-productive and disturbing.
Insisting that there is no economic gain that would be worth the life of any Nigerian daily damaged as a result of cannabis abuse, Marwa said: “It is disturbing that at this time when about 10 million Nigerians are abusing cannabis, anyone or group will be considering or advocating for Nigeria to legalise the growing of marijuana for economic or whatever purposes.
“Our committee has spent the last six months going round the country to obtain first hand information about the dangers of drug abuse and how to combat it, and we have been faced with the stark reality of how deep the menace has damaged and still damaging lives, especially the youths.
“No doubt, President Muhammadu Buhari was worried about this emergency situation, hence the decision to set up PACEDA to find a lasting solution to the threat. We should not therefore fold our hands or keep sealed lips while deliberate attempts are being made to sabotage the genuine efforts of the Federal Government in the interest of the nation.
“We dare say that no economic gain is worth the life of any Nigerian daily damaged on the street as a result of the effect of cannabis. There is therefore the need for all stakeholders, at the federal, state and local government levels to rally round the Federal Government efforts at eliminating the menace of drug abuse rather than engaging in any counter-productive venture.”