In the last three years, Kano State reportedly tops the list of the states with the highest rate of drug addiction in the country.
Codeine, a prescription pain medication used to treat mild or moderate pain is a drug which is abused by some youths in the state. It comes in tablet and syrup form and as the main ingredient in the prescription for cough suppressants.
Statistics by the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) said despite its efforts to stem the trend in the bud, two million bottles of codeine syrup and thousands of kilograms of narcotics are reportedly being consumed daily in Kano State.
The statistics also revealed that most of the drug users are young boys and girls between the age of 16 and 25 and they are linked to several crimes committed under the influence of drugs.
How to end the menace has been a topic of discussion by industrial pharmacists of Nigeria, vigilante groups and members of police community in Kano State.
Speaking with Channels Television, the Police PRO in Kano State, Magaji Majia believes that efforts by the police are quelling the crisis.
“If we compare last year and first quarter of this year, it shows that the influx of the drugs has really been reduced to the barest minimum,” he said.
Community-based organisations in the state are also trying to keep young people in the state away from drugs with the state government setting up a committee on drug abuse.
The Commandant of NDLEA, Hamza Umar, however, thinks more efforts are needed to reduce the menace and a rehabilitation center for victims of drug abuse.
“We don’t have enough of those apparatus, those things needed to fully combat the abuse,” he said.
Some suspected drug barons have been arrested by security operatives while some deadly locations inhabited by drug peddlers in Kano State have been cleared. It is the hope of many residents that the increased trend of drug abuse in the state will, therefore, become a thing of the past.
Most of the people consuming this don’t know what it does to their bodies and what the side effects are.
Some common side effects of codeine: drowsiness, light-headedness, dizziness, sedation, shortness of breath, nausea, vomiting, stomach pain, sweating, constipation, itching, or rash.
Other serious side effects include may include; dependence, seizures, confusion, near-fainting, slow heart rate and shallow breathing.