Nigeria Country Profile

Flag of Nigeria Country Profile

Drug policy

  • The National Drug Control Master Plan (2021- 2025) outlines Nigeria’s approach to dealing with a range of drug- related issues including illicit drug supply, drug demand reduction and control of licit substances.
  • The Government of Nigeria has pursued a law enforcement approach to respond to the challenges of drug trafficking, production and use.
  • There is a government unit responsible for prevention and treatment of alcohol and drug use disorders.
  • The Nigeria Government works closely with specialist national agencies to ensure the effectiveness of policies implemented to control drug use.
  • The strategy is based on a four pillar model and its overall aims are to: prioritise collaboration and consultation; address the differences between law enforcement and drug demand reduction; work alongside leading agencies to ensure effective management and implementation of the strategy; and promote monitoring and evaluation of the effectiveness of the strategy.

Treatment and Recovery Services

  • The aim of treatment is total abstinence and there is no evidence of drug substitution treatment.
  • Treatment in Nigeria primarily takes place in psychiatric hospitals though it is also offered in some private hospitals, in centres run by NGOs and by traditional healers.
  • Stigma and unavailability of treatment services are significant barriers in access to treatment for people with drug or substance use disorder

  • Detoxification is offered as part of inpatient and outpatient treatment service
  • Treatment often involves psychotherapy, counselling, educational, occupational and social rehabilitation and reconnection.
  • Family members are encouraged to participate in the process of treatment.
  • Screening and brief treatment is offered in primary care.
  • The Drug Use in Nigeria Survey 2018 highlighted gaps in meeting the treatment and care needs for people with drug use disorders.

  • Recovery is recognised as a subset of Treatment Services. 

  • The majority of rehabilitation centres in Nigeria are run by religious groups, and are widely accepted by the medical community.

  • The NDCMP 2021-2025 makes provision for the review of existing guidelines and policies to reflect a unified treatment strategy that includes Recovery management.

Prevention Services

  • Primary prevention activities are aimed at reducing the likelihood of young people initiating drug use and schools deliver preventative education activities.
  • Behaviour change programmes are designed for youth, families and communities, with the hope that by providing information people will be more able to make informed decisions. 
  • Other prevention activity target groups include market women, road transport workers and artisans.
  • Drug abuse prevention enlightenment programmes are delivered by print, electronic media and through lectures in schools, workplaces, youth camps and clinics.
  • HIV services for people who inject drugs are limited.
  • There are no needle exchange programmes or supervised injection facilities.