The Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) has commended the Federal Government for banning the production and importation of codeine as active pharmaceutical ingredient for cough syrup preparations in the country.
He said the measure would go a long way in reducing the rate of crimes, pointing out that most of drug addicts engaged in one crime or the other.
DAILY POST reports that the Minister of Health, Prof. Isaac Adewole, had on Tuesday directed the National Agency for Food, Drug Administration and Control, NAFDAC, to ban with immediate effect further issuance of permits for the importation of codeine as active pharmaceutical ingredient for cough preparations.
NSCDC’s Spokesman in Jigawa, Adamu Shehu, gave the commendation during an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Dutse on Sunday.
The spokesman, however, advised the Federal Government to also regulate the sale of rubber solution popularly known as ‘Sholisho.’
Shehu noted that if rubber solution was left uncontrolled, it could serve as immediate alternative to those abusing the codeine syrup.
He said, “Honestly, this is a welcome development because codeine is being abused by youths who are supposed to be our future leaders.
‘‘So, we are glad that the government has finally done something about it.
“Rubber solution is also seriously being abused by the youth.
‘‘In fact, I think it can even be more damaging than codeine because it is a kind of gum made for vulcanizers to patch tubes for motorcycles and cars, but it ended up being abused by our youths.
“Unlike the codeine which under normal circumstances is not supposed to be sold to anyone without doctor’s prescriptions, the rubber solution can be bought anywhere in the market.
“And whenever you arrest a suspect in connection to its abuse, he will tell you that he bought it from a trader in the market.
“And even if you arrest the trader for selling it to the suspect and take to court for trial, it will be hard for such trader to be prosecuted.
“This is because you will not have substantial evidence against the dealers since it is sold without prescriptions like other medicines.”