By Segun Olaniyi - The Guardian News

Stakeholders, who are at the forefront of drug policy reform advocacy in the country, have decried criminalisation and molestation of drug users by law enforcement agencies in the country.

They said the imperative of criminal justice reform was to adopt alternatives to incarceration for low-level petty offences, while calling on government to provide drug treatment in all primary health care centres across the country, which could be easily accessible for all drugs users.

Communications / Programme Assistant, YouthRise Nigeria, Martha Saleh, said the programme was also part of the “Support, Don’t Punish” global advocacy campaign, which called for prioritisation of health and reduction of drug-related harms among youths.

According to her, the platform gave youths the opportunity to deliberate on growing prevalence of drug use among young people, and how the current punitive response to the challenges impacts the health, human rights, and overall development of young people in Nigeria.