THE National Drug Law and Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), Osun State Command, has disclosed that some bakers in the state have been lacing cakes meant for consumption with drugs and substance.
According to the NDLEA, some food and drink vendors have also been serving as agents selling drugs to students in some secondary schools in the state.
The Zonal Commander, Zone I, of the NDLEA Joyce Titus-Awogbuyi, made the disclosure during Drug Abuse Prevention Town Hall Meeting with Principals of schools’, in Osogbo, on Tuesday.
Titus-Awogbuyi stated that school children can be adicted to drugs through food and drink being sold to them by vendors, noting that criminals now go to secondary schools in disguise as a food or drink vendors to sell drugs to students.
She called on school authorities to be vigilant and limit numbers of vendors coming to their schools, while they should disengage people of questionable characters.
The Zonal Commander said it will be of benefit to the schools if numbers of food and drink vendors allowed in school premises are limited.
Titus-Awogbuyi opined that schools in collaboration with the Parent Teachers Association (PTA) should carry out drug test for secondary school students, noting that postponing such may put their life in jeopardy in future.
She said: “The dangers posed by drugs like cocaine, heroin, cannabis, psychotropic substances and non-conventional drugs to the future of our youth in schools in Nigeria and indeed Osun State are so great that there is an urgent need for awareness and prevention about drugs in school.
“School principals should also consider creating environment that discourages drug use by carrying out random drug test on students. Parents should be carried along so the students can do it. Doing it in the future may put their life in jeopardy.
“It will also be of benefit to the schools if food and drink vendors allowed in the school premises are limited in number and are of unquestionable characters.
“It is my belief that our joint efforts and commitment in the area of efficient drug awareness and prevention can keep Osun State secondary school students out of problematic drug use, misuse and illicit trafficking.”
Bakers Now Lace Cake With Canadian Loud
In his remarks at the programme, Osun State Commandant of the NDLEA, Nnadi Chidi, disclosed that bakers in the state have been lacing cakes with Canadian loud, calling on parents to be vigilant of what their children consume at birthday party or any event.
Chidi stated that the command had recently apprehended a baker who wanted to lace a birthday cake with loud.
According to Chidi, the commercial driver bringing the drug for her from Lagos was intercepted by the officers of the Command in Gbongan and he led the officers to the bakers in Osogbo.
He said: “Parents and guidance needs to be very vigilant of what their children consume at birthday parties these days. A lot is happening. Currently we arrested a lady who is a baker in Osogbo.
“She ordered for a Canadian loud from Lagos State and it was weighbilled through a commercial driver as message. On getting to Gbongan, our officers intercepted him and he claimed he wasn’t aware of the content of the message.
“We led him to Osogbo and the lady came to collect the stuff. It was on that point that we got her arrested and she pleaded that it was a parent that requested for the drug to be laced with cake for a daughter’s birthday.
“You can see how bad the situation is. So, imagine little children eating from the cake. They would have gotting intoxicated and tested positive for drug after that”.
The Commander warned school principals on food and drink vendors coming to their schools, noting that some of drugs dealers now pretend as vendors.
He disclosed that some of the vendors now mix milo with cannabis and sell to students as ordinary tea.
Chidi urged the school authorities not to hesitate to contact the NDLEA area offices whenever they find any drug dealers around their schools.
In his keynote address, the Commissioner for Education, Hon. Sunday Eluwole, said it is disheartening to know that secondary school students are expose to drug and substance usage.
Eluwole who was represented by the Permanent Secretary of the ministry, Mr. Murtala Jimoh, commended Osun NDLEA and promised that the ministry would look into some of the recommendations made at the meeting.
Yusuf Oketola is a trained journalist with over five years of experience in the media industry. He has worked for both print and online medium. He is a thorough-bred professional with an eye of hindsight on issues bothering on social justice, purposeful leadership, and a society where the leaders charge and work for the prosperity of the people.