The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) has explained why it chose Musician and rapper, Naira Marley, as an ambassador for its drug abuse advocacy campaign.
The explanation came timely after it attracted criticisms from many Nigerians including Nollywood Actress, Tonto Dike.
Femi Babafemi, the spokesperson for NDLEA, explained that Naira Marley was chosen for this role because of his influential position as the leader of the “Marlians” movement, which boasts a substantial following, especially among the youth demographic.
In his words; “It is an advocacy engagement with him. It is what we do as part of the responsibilities of the agency to promote advocacy messages that would discourage people from substance abuse. It is about the message.
“Don’t forget that he has a lot of young followers— Marlians— that look up to him. The idea is for the leader of the movement (Marlians) to come out and ask people to stop substance abuse, and live a new life.”
However, NDLEA’s choice to appoint Naira Marley as an ambassador does not mean he is immune to legal consequences.
Babafemi made it clear that NDLEA’s commitment to enforcing drug laws remains unchanged.
He recounted instances from the previous year when NDLEA arrested some of Naira Marley’s associates, Zinoleesky and Mohbad, on drug-related charges.
Babafemi asserted that even if Naira Marley himself were to be caught with illegal substances, he would face the appropriate legal repercussions.