Flogged for Taking Meth

There’s a growing concern about the usage of crystal meth in Nigeria where its usage has become increasingly popular. WebMD describes it as,

Crystal meth is the common name for crystal methamphetamine, a strong and highly addictive drug that affects the central nervous system. There is no legal use for it. It comes in clear crystal chunks or shiny blue-white rocks. Also called “ice” or “glass,” it’s a popular party drug.

Usually, users smoke crystal meth with a small glass pipe, but they may also swallow it, snort it, or inject it into a vein. People say they have a quick rush of euphoria shortly after using it. But it’s dangerous. It can damage your body and cause severe psychological problems.

Users of meth, call it “ice,” “glass,” “shards” or “meth,” but among the general public and in the news, it’s called “crystal meth,” a reference to the fact that it resembles shards of glass crystals. Crystal meth causes an intense elevated or euphoric mood that is much stronger than cocaine.

  • Sustained euphoric or extremely happy mood
  • Feelings of being invincible
  • Days of insomnia or constant wakefulness 
  • Hallucinations or delusional behavior
  • Constant itching or scabs
  • Rotten, decaying teeth

Users because of their addiction resort to stealing or worse killing in order to get money to buy meth. With a shortage of rehab centers in Nigeria, some communities have resorted to public flogging as a deterrent.

In 2013, Nigerian forces raided a meth lab as reported by the Guardian. Nigerian drug enforcement agents had received a tipoff that Baez Benitez Milan (real name Gonzalo Osario), a car dealer from Paraguay, had entered the country. He was a Colombian drug runner who was known to charge $38,000 (£25,000) a week to set up a meth lab but was using motor trade in the country as a cover.

Though law enforcement has been active in busting meth labs and their forerunners since then, this illicit trade and drugs still find their way to Nigerian youth and some are even exported outside the country.

Written by Abena Magis

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