•The NDLEA Rehabilitation Centre
Chima Azubuike, Gombe
The Gombe State Commander of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency, Mr Aliyu Adole, has said 216 outpatient and inpatient drug addicts have so far been rehabilitated in the recently built rehabilitation centre furnished by the state government with support from donor agencies.
Adole said this in an interview with Northern City News in Gombe.
He said some of the problems encountered by the agency in running the centre included the inability to properly feed the inpatients.
According to him, the state command currently finds it difficult to provide three square meals for inpatients because of the paucity of funds.
He also said the lack of patrol vehicles was hampering the command’s efforts to man the six area commands within its jurisdiction, noting that Gombe had borders that required regular monitoring.
The commander stated, “Out of the 216, a total of 101 were referred from the general raid on drug joints. The centre still needs government assistance; we have a 24-bed centre, which requires individual contributions. The feeding of ex-convict clients is a challenge; we had to release them to their parents to be coming from home.
“We need patrol vehicles to patrol the five roads that come in and out of Gombe. These are the Biu-Gombe, Adamawa-Gombe, Bauchi-Gombe, Darazzo-Gombe and Potiskum-Gombe roads.
“If we are able to patrol these routes, the influx of drugs will be curtailed. Already, we have created six area commands and they need patrol vehicles; some of the terrain is rugged, full of mountains and valleys, where patrol vans are most ideal.
“For cannabis cultivators, the routes we usually take to arrest them are usually cattle routes; and for this type of operations, once you delay, you may be attacked.”
He also expressed the command’s gratitude to the state government for its assistance to the agency.
Adole, however, appealed to the government to expedite action towards setting up the State Drug Abuse Control Committee.
“This committee is expected to be chaired by the governor or his nominee, and commander of the NDLEA is supposed to be a member; all line ministries are members; the paramilitary agencies and the relevant MDAs are all members. Thankfully, in 2019, we successfully convicted 19 persons out of the 69 arrests we made,” he added.