The spokesperson of the Lagos state Police Command, SP Benjamin Hundeyin, has said that the prevalence of substance abuse in the music industry has made the work of policing more difficult as the industry has consistently glamorized drug use over the years.
The police spokesperson made this assertion at the 2023 Press Week Lecture/Symposium, organized by the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), in partnership with News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), Lagos Chapter on Thursday, September 28.
“The music industry is not helping us in any way. They glamorize drugs. Not all that glitters is gold.” he said while urging the elderly Nigerians to join in the fight against drug abuse.
He alleged that a lot of superstars are involved in drug abuse. According to him, when musicians have health challenges, most times they would not want to go to the hospital but rather invite a nurse to treat them at home because they are using drugs.
“Going to the hospital will expose that and they don’t want people to know.” he said.
According to him, behind most crimes in society, there is substance abuse or drug addiction among youths. He said the command regularly arrests criminals in the state and in 90 per cent of the cases, the criminals blame their actions on drugs.
“Drugs and their attendant problems are things that manifest in the society. We all know that there is a direct connection between drugs and crimes. For us in the Lagos State Police Command, we have come to realise that the more there is drug use in the society, the higher the crime rate is. If drugs actually reduce in the society, crimes too will reduce. Ordinarily, people would not go and commit crimes until they use drugs,” he said
He said that beyond crimes, drug abuse messes up the health and future of Nigerian youths.
On the way forward, the PPRO said that the media and other stakeholders have a strong role to play in portraying the ills and dangers of drugs in society. He lamented that elders who should be custodians of morals have been arrested on several occasions for selling illicit drugs.
“It is painful when elderly parents come to beg for their children arrested for drugs. Encouraging drug use will not help anyone. Elderly ones should be our mouthpiece. It is bad that elderly people are making this problem worse. We need to expose this. Our borders are quite porous, people bring in things, illicit drugs inclusive. The more we make noise about it, the better” he said