The Chairman, National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), Brig.-Gen. Buba Marwa (Rtd), has expressed support for pre-marital drug test.
According to him, it is a key factor to having a stable home.
Marwa made his view known on Saturday in Abuja at a pre-marital conference organised by Coal to Diamond Support Network, an NGO for young adults.
The conference had as its theme “The Wedding or the Marriage: What are you preparing for?“
Marwa, who was represented by Mr. Shehu Dankolo, a Principal Staff Officer in NDLEA, warned on the dire consequences of drug abuse.
According to him, substance use, not only destroys marriages, but equally leads to health problems, morbidity, injuries, violence and death.
He said most often the physical, psychological and social consequences of drug use were very obvious and disturbing.
“The mental, physical and spiritual quality of life of individuals has definite impact on a society’s future.
“If would-be couples choose to undergo HIV and genotype tests before marriage without any law compelling them to do so, they should equally consider drug test as critical to their wellbeing and the stability of their homes, ” he said.
In her remarks, Hajia Munirat Marwa, Chief Host of the event, emphasised the need for drug test before marriage, warning that drugs were destroying many marriages, families and communities.
She urged youths preparing for weddings to take drug test as part of their preparations, adding that there was a difference between wedding and marriage.
She said, “the wedding, as we all know, is a short time event while marriage is intended for a lifetime.
“As such, the conference has come at the right time when couples are putting more importance and emphasis on the wedding rather than on the marriage itself.
“It is, therefore, important we pay attention to preparing for the marriage and one of such ways is through pre-marital counselling and drug test.
“This prepares the couple very well and has the ability to reduce domestic violence, divorce , as well as increase happiness and longevity in marriages, ” she said.
Other notable speakers at the conference included the wife of a former Vice President Namadi Sambo, Hajiya Amina Namadi Sambo and the President of the group, Hajia Bilkisu Mohammed.
The Keynote Speaker, Alhaji Sa’id Takuma, also emphasised the need for the proper counselling of intending couples.
He said such counselling would safeguard their marriages and future.