CHAPTER ONE: Introduction

  • Background of the study

Drug Abuse is the excessive illness or addictive use of drugs for non medical purpose. It is also define as a state, emotional, and sometimes physical, characterized by a compulsion to take drugs on a constant basis in order to experience it mental effects.

Youths in any society occupy a delicate and sensitive position within the population structure for several reasons. Nigeria law for instance, recognizes that an individual below the age of seven is incapable of committing a crime, and an individual between the ages of seven and above should know what he ought to do.

Moreover, drug abuse has reached an alarming stage so much so that it has affected most of the Youths in Jalingo metropolis directly or indirectly.

To curb the menace of drug Abuse, the Federal Government decided to establish the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency by decree 48 of 1989 whose statutory responsibilities is to control, prevent the distribution of drugs and as well prosecute those responsible for drug Trafficking and to rehabilitate those who are addicted to drugs.

The use of drugs among youths in Jalingo   metropolis has become an embarrassing occurrence to parents, schools, Government authorities and the Society at large. The constant abuse of drugs among the youths can cause psycho-social problem in society. One may hope that hateful practice and its associated problems will not lead to breading of a deranged generation of Youth which will equally affect the labor force in Jalingo metropolis. However this is not speculative because of what happen to be the frequent and rampant drug crisis in Jalingo metropolis.

Youths in this research refer to age range of 15-35 years of age. This is a time of experimentation, exploration, curiosity and identity search. Part of such quest involve risk taking of which includes the use and abuse of psychoactive substances which are the drugs that apply their effects on the brain resulting in sedation, encouragement, or change in mood of an individual. Youths are faced with the huge task of establishing a sense of identity (American Psychology Association 2002).

The new cognitive skills of maturing youth give them the ability to reflect on who are they and what makes them unique. Identity is made up of two components viz: self-concept and self-esteem.

Self-concept is a set of believe about oneself, including the attributes, roles, goals, interest, values, religious and political believes  while self Esteem is how one feels about one’s self concept. All of the developmental changes that youths experience prepare them with new behavior. This experimentation results in risk taking which is the normal stage in youth development (SUE etal, 2009).

Engaging in risk taking behaviors help youths to shape their identities, try out their new decision making skills and gain peers acceptance (pontoon, 2009).

Unfortunately, some of the risk that youth takes may pose a real threat to their health and well-being. These threat includes unwanted pregnancy, cigarette smoking, excessive alcohol consumption and at large drug abuse.

The impact of drug abuse among youth in Jalingo  metropolis has been a sigma of morally bankrupt, decadent and a wasted generation that must be revitalize and collectively salvaged together in order to prevent the total degeneration and loss of our societal values and ideas.

Drug abuse has far reaching consequences on the progress and aspiration of the youths. It can lead to rape, armed robbery, cultism, murder, and theft e.t.c. It starts during the adolescent stage were the child feels it is fun to get involved in drugs and can develop in to chronic addict and can as well result to untimely death if adequate remedial steps are not taken. It has constituted a setback in the lives of many and has been a menace in all aspect of human lives.

Step must be taken by both Government and individuals to put an end to this ugly trend or faced a situations were high percentages of the workforce will be mentally deranged and labor will be left to suffer.

The NDLEA on her part must make efforts to ensure that apart from restricting the distribution and abuse of drugs, must ensure that those who are already addicted are rehabilitated so as to swell the workforce. Rehabilitation in this context means to make those who have already gone badly back to a useful and positive condition.

The drug culture is sweeping fast through the younger generation in higher institutions of learning, night and Jazz clubs, drinking bars, manual laborers and even student of secondary and tertiary schools within Jalingo Metropolis. The danger of consumption of these dangerous and expensive drugs is also obvious. Low income earners who have become an addict and must want to satisfy their demand for the drugs may decide to resort to theft, robbery, kidnapping and hired assassin in order to acquire necessary funds to meet their demands. No wonder crime rate is in the increase in our society today.

Apart from the financial implications, medically, these drugs cause a lot of complications to human health by way of lung diseases, uneasiness, general body pain, hysteria feverishness and atoms of animal behavior.

The humiliating part of drugs abuse is how the indigene of Jalingo and Nigeria at large are mal-treated abroad. Equally embarrassing is the treatment of holders of Nigerian diplomatic passport and Visa who are subjected to humiliating search of their persons and luggage in spite of their declared status. This in essence means that if the menace of drugs abuse is not put to an end, Nigeria as a country will not have respect among its peers. The national drug law enforcement agency must work tooth and nail to put an end to this ugly trend or be ready to have a society without healthy youth which is very risky to the development of any country.

  • Statement of the Research Problem

The menace of drugs abuse among youths in Jalingo has been the center of attractions for comments, debates and discussion among the public media and other intelligentsia. Drugs abuse has been a problem among youths in Jalingo metropolis were cases of youths appearing before school and community disciplinary committee as well as psychiatric home is on the increase.

The phenomenon exhibits a great deal of worry in some parents, teachers and Government.Most parents in Jalingo today engaged in their quest to make ends meet searched for greener pasture always abandon and neglect the proper welfare of their wards and children are exposed to un-official assistance of the so called house maid. This ugly incidence will psychologically depress such children thereby given rise to child abuse which is an offshoot of drug abuse. Without mincing word such children will end up taking solace in some illicit hard drugs for their survival in life. With this sad development, the society is gradually and systematically ruined uncontrollably thereby destroying the moral value of Jalingo metropolis.

Some group of teenagers are emotionally stressed but instead of them to seek for proper medical attention, because a stitch in time save nine, they resort to self-medication there by using hard drugs for such corrections.

The various effects of psychoactive drugs are so devastating and very shameful to the extent that both national and international organizations all over the world are also worried about the spread of this scourge among Nigeria Youth.

The research is challenged by some who do not want to fill the research questions base on reason known to them and high level of illiteracy among some of the youths who can neither read nor write.




  • Research questions

The research questions of this study include the followings:

  1. To what extent are youths in Jalingo metropolis engaging in drugs abuse?
  2. What are the causes of drug abuse among youth in Jalingo?
  • What are the consequences of psychoactive drug among youth?
  1. What are the social implications of psychoactive drug among youth?
  2. How does psychoactivedrug affect personalitydevelopment among the youths in Jalingo metropolis?
    • Aims and objectives of the study

The aim and objective of this research is an attempt to sociologically analyses psychoactive drugs and personality development of youths in Jalingo Metropolis.

The research finding may apply to other parts of Nigeria. The aim and objectives of this research includes:

  1. To find out why youths abuse drugs
  2. Find out which psychoactive drug mostly used by the youths and why.
  • To correct the situations by making useful suggestion to prevent or control the use of psychoactive drugs among the youths
  1. To investigate the consequences of psychoactive drug on the general behavior of the youths.
    • Hypothesis

To arrive at a fruitful research of this magnitude the following statement of hypothesis are declared:

HI Psychoactive Drugs has effect on youths’ personal development in Jalingo metropolis.

HII Psychoactive Drugs has no effect on youths’ personal development in youths in Jalingo metropolis.

  • Significance of the study

The study will be significant in the following ways;

It can be used for academic purposes. Other academics who want to make research on similar topic may use it as a guide.

It will serve as a source of knowledge to the society and the Government. It will help the Government in policy formulations in reducing Drug abuse among the Youths.

It will as well expose the menace of Drug abuse to both public and private establishment who may want to assist the victims

  • Scope of the problem

Due to the specification of the research topic, the research is restricted to youth in Jalingo Metropolis. Due to scope of the research on the youth, students of secondary and tertiary institutions of learning within the metropolis formed part of the research as they constitute a high percentage of youth population.

The quality of the research will be affected by finance as the researcher lack financial resources needed for this research.

The research is also crippled by lack of time to succinctly explore other avenues to get information to enrich the research work resulting from my engaging in other Academic activities.

  • Definition of key terms

Drug: This is a chemical agent that is capable of affecting living process. (Oloyede; an introduction to drug abuse education, drug resource limited, Abuja, 2002). These drugs include cocaine, heroin, and marijuana, and murplsicopium, poppy or cocoa leaves.

Drug Abuse: a drug is said to be Abuse when it is not pharmacological or physically necessary. It can also be used to describe a situation where by the dosage of a given drug is exceeded by the user.

Addict: A person who is unable to stop using harmful drugs.

Psychiatrist: A doctor who study mental illness.

Cannabis: A drug made from dried leaves and flowers of hemp plant which is smoked or eaten and gives the users of being relax.

Alcohol: This is a drink that can make people misbehave when drunk.

Youth:  Youth, according to the general definition of human development, are people between the ages of fifteen (15) and thirty-five (35) years old.

Psycho: a person who is mentally ill and behaves in a very strange way.

Psychoactive: (Pharmacology) Affecting the mind or mental processes of a person.