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It
is no news that Drug Abuse in quite rampant in Nigeria, this is mad epossible because
most of drugs being abused are readily available over the counter to any
willing buyer. Hence, the call by the S
enator representing Lagos
East, Senator Gbenga Ashafa on the Association of Community Pharmacist’s, to
lead the charge in the fight against the abuse of over the counter and
prescription pills.


 Ashafa who made the
call as the chairman of the 2017 Edition of the Lagos Chapter of the
Associations Day, was represented by Dr. Rotimi Adesanya a family
Physician and Head of Senator Gbenga Ashafa’s Medical Outreach Team.

At the event which was
themed “National development: The role of pharmaceutical sector” with a sub
theme Building a healthy nation: role of community pharmacists”, the Senator
commended the role of community pharmacists as first responders in the
community health value chain.

While decrying the rise in
the abuse of prescription medications and over the counter pills, which he
described as dangers to National Development, the Senator stated that “
At this juncture, I must state that the increased rate
of drug abuse, particularly in the dispensation of over the counter medication has
become very alarming and a threat to National Development. Drugs like, codeine,
tramadol etc have been used as stimulants and narcotics by a large number of
our youth. 

“To this end, I sponsored a motion on the floor
of the senate a 
Motion on Nigerians involvement in illicit
Global Drug Trade and increase in Domestic Abuse by Nigerian Youths and a bill
for the amendment of the Nigerian Drug Law Enforcement Agency Act. These
legislative interventions seek to ensure that we overcome drug abuse in Nigeria.”

He concluded by charging the pharmacists not to sell
drugs capable of being abused indiscriminately, stating that “I therefore seize
this opportunity to reiterate my call that community pharmacists’ should lead
the charge in ensuring that prescription medication are only sold upon
presentation of the Doctor’s prescription. While every other over the counter
medication that have been commonly abused, should only be sold when the need is
justified.”