The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency, (NDLEA) has said that the war against drug abuse and trafficking, had gained significant strength with the addition of Newly trained narcotics’ assistants to the agency’s workforce.
Marwa made the declaration at the official passing out parade and closing ceremony of the training of Narcotic Assistants Course 3, on Saturday, at the NDLEA Academy, Kotton Rikkos, Jos, Plateau State, according to a statement issued on Saturday, by the agency’s spokesman, Mr Femi Babafemi.
The ceremony, Marwa said, was yet another of the agency’s efforts in the War Against Drug Abuse (WADA) campaign and the total eradication of illicit drugs and their effects in Nigeria.
He described the training and passing out ceremony as aligning with his vision of a well-motivated, visible, and proactive workforce “that is service-ready to meet the dreams and aspirations of the founding fathers of the agency and that of the nation in general.”
The NDLEA Chairman said that Narcotic Assistants Course 3 of 2021, was the largest of the cadre and the first-ever course in over 25 years.
He noted that the process leading to the training began in 2019, but was put on hold because of the COVID-19 pandemic, which prevented gatherings and engendered global lockdowns across countries and continents.
Marwa stressed that the agency had lived up to its mandate and the accompanying challenges of the past eight months, reminding the new Narcotic Assistants, that they would be joining their colleagues already in the field across Nigeria, fighting the drug war.
“The training has prepared you physically, mentally and psychologically for the demanding tasks ahead. You must, henceforth, keep in mind that you are on a national assignment in the fight against the drug pandemic.
“You are going to be assaulted and tempted psychologically and physically, subtly and brashly by merchants of this nefarious trade.
“You will be offered money and other forms of gratification. I call on you all, to cultivate the will, guts and coping skills required to reject these temptations and allow for effective discharge of your duties, ” he said.
The NDLEA Chairman also seized the occasion to remind the Newly trained narcotics’ assistants and the public, that the fight against illicit drugs, this time, was neither half-hearted nor would it be compromised.
“The agency more than ever before demands complete loyalty, commitment, sacrifice, and dedication from you in pursuit of the nation’s goal of a drug-free society.
” Since I assumed office, I have demonstrated in words and in action, a desire to up the ante on Drug Enforcement Administration in Nigeria and improve staff welfare, while developing better working conditions for the Agency.
” It is my aspiration that by the time the current series of Basic Training is completed, the NDLEA will be able to establish offices and presence in all the seven hundred and seventy-four (774) local government areas in Nigeria“, he said.
He assured the new officers of the leadership’s resolve to continue to work on improving their welfare, working conditions and environment for the agency’s workforce.
Marwa urged them to abide by the ethos of paramilitary service, namely discipline and loyalty.
“I charge you all to conduct yourselves as well-trained and disciplined men fighting a just war, aimed at ridding the country of the drug scourge”, he added.
The NDLEA boss called on the public to join forces with the NDLEA at safeguarding the country from the drug menace.
“We must always keep in mind that it is our society, our children, our youths, our people, our future and our culture that are under attack and in danger of being replaced by the drug culture. Let us arise in unison against this dreaded monster, ” Marwa said.
The ceremony, which concluded with an awards presentation to the best performing cadets in eight different categories, was well attended by a cross-section of the public and service institutions.
These included representatives of the GOC, 3 Div. NA; Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC); Nigeria Immigration Service; Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC).
Others were: the Nigeria Customs Service; Nigeria Correctional Service; Chairman, Senate Committee on Narcotics and the Jos North Traditional Council, among others. (NAN)