A non-governmental organisation, Come Alive Initiative, on Tuesday raised the alarm over the use of Indian hemp as gift items during public functions in Onitsha and environs.
The national coordinator of the CAI, Mr Victor Enwezor, raised the concern during a symposium on drug abuse in Onitsha to mark 2018 International Drug Day with the theme, ‘Drug/Substance Abuse: Its effects on the Socio-economic Development of Communities.’
Enwezor said the development had posed socio-economic challenges in Onitsha.
He said, “If you come to some burial ceremonies or other events here in Onitsha, you will see cannabis wrapped like pills and served in trays with lighters.
“These things are in the open and nobody seems to want to talk about it.
“We need to expose some of these things unless we want to continue to live in illusion.”
He said the purpose of the CAI was to battle such menace in Onitsha and environs.
The Obi of Onitsha, Igwe Alfred Achebe, said drug abuse and cultism were major causes of crime and called on parents to monitor their children.
The state Commissioner of Police, Mr Garba Umar, warned youths to avoid drug or face the wrath of the law.