Monrovia-jan-31-TNR: The Liberia Drug Enforcement Agency (LDEA) says it welcomes a statement made by President Joseph Nyumah Boakai declaring Drug and Substance Abuse a Public Health Emergency.

President Boakai made the statement in the joint Chamber of the Legislature during his first State of the Nation Address (SONA) in Monrovia on Monday, January 29, 2024.

“Given the need for immediate action to make good my pledge to the thousands of families burdened by this crisis, I am hereby declaring Drugs and Substance abuse as a Public Health Emergency.”

The LDEA wishes to applaud the President for the pronouncement and further welcomed his call for drug testing across the government as he vows to lead the way alongside his Vice President Jeremiah Kpahn Koung.

“In this fight, me and my Vice President, we will be the first to take a drug test and I urge all others to follow, the President said.

The statement further affirmed the decision of the LDEA as contained in the proposed amended Drug Law before the Liberian Senate. In part, the LDEA recommended the need to run a drug testing process as either a policy of government or on the basis of request as per requirements. Therefore, the agency wishes that the action should not just be a need-to, but should rather be instituted as a policy or a legislation empowering the institution for the conduct of such function. The LDEA believes that with this, we will go a long way in discouraging the culture and perception of drug used.

The agency wishes to inform the public that in the wake of mountain challenges in the fight against drug abuse, it views the statement from the President as timely, reinvigorating and that it sets the bases for a more transparent, accountable and robust fight against the menace.

“Also, the LDEA would like to thank the President for recognizing its role and for including the agency as a member of the multi-sectorial drug steering committee.

The President also used the occasion to establish a multi-sectorial drug steering committee that will work towards developing a road map in the fight against drug abuse, moving forward. He said, “In this direction, I am establishing a multi-sectorial steering committee comprising the following agencies:”

Ministry of Health as Chair, Ministry of Justice, Co-Chair, Ministry of Youth and Sports, member, Ministry of Gender, Children, and Social Protection, member, Liberia Drug Enforcement Agency (LDEA), member and the Ministry of Finance and Development Planning (MFDP) as member.

“Additionally, as we gear up for a more robust fight against drug abuse, we like to thank the President for nominating Col. Abraham Kromah as LDEA new Director General. We’re certain that with his worth of experience and professional discipline, we are of the conviction that he will deliver as expected. “Congratulations for your nomination Hon Abe Kromah, we look forward to working with you.”

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