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National honors: Include drug test in screening of nominees, Farida Waziri tells FG

Former chairman of Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Farida Waziri has advocated that drug tests be included in the screening process for people nominated for national honors.

Farida Waziri was inaugurated as a member of the national honours award committee on Thursday in Abuja.

The committee members are to screen and select eminent Nigerians and friends of Nigeria, who have contributed to the development of the country.

Waziri while speaking with NAN on Friday praised President Muhammadu Buhari for restoring honor to the selection process by picking men and women of impeccable character to handle the national assignment.

She said the committee will work hard to consider people of impeccable character, adding that the focus will be on merit, patriotism and federal character.

She said beyond these criteria, she would also seek the inclusion of drug test as part of the vetting process for nominees.

According to her, this will be in line with the current war against drug abuse launched by the president in June.

“As a member of this noble national honours award committee, I will be calling for use of drug integrity test as part of the screening process for those to be considered for the honours award,” she said.

“That way, we will be extending deterrence frontiers of the drug war, because it has to cover all age brackets and social strata.”

Waziri said there is a need to emphasise patriotism in the country, as the security challenges Nigeria is facing “would make anybody conclude that another hostile nation has invaded Nigeria”.

“It is shocking that majority of those behind these problems are Nigerians, terrorising their fellow Nigerians,” she said.

“This must stop and we all must learn to be patriotic in the interest of the nation.”

The committee was inaugurated by George Akume, minister of special duties and intergovernmental affairs.

The committee is chaired by Sidi Muhammad, Emir of Lafia, and has Waziri (north-central), Muhammed Ja’afaru (north-west), Sali Bello (north-east), Inikio Dede (south-south), Lazarus Ekwueme (south-east), and Yemisi Shyllon (south-west), as members.

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