There’s a new drug on the streets of Lagos, locally known as “COLORADO”.
The word “Colorado” was derived from a name of a city in U.S.A, originated from there popularly known as ” CANNABIS”.
Most users prefer to smoke it, usually mixed with high-grade cannabis and rolled up in papers like tobacco and weed.
Although it can come in almost any color, the backroom chemists who make it often use dried herbs or lawn clippings to make sure it looks closely like the real stuff, so it often appears something between a deep shade of green and damp brown.
In the real sense, it looks a lot like marijuana , but it’s the farthest thing from marijuana that you’ve ever heard of.
And now, while the consumption of drugs like marijuana and the likes Codeine and Tramadol has reached an alarming rate, a new, unfriendly substance is causing convulsions, kidney failure and a ‘zombie-like’ state of intoxication that can lead to death.
This synthetic weed is sold in small quantities for a little as 2,000 naira and as much as 10,000 naira, depending on the size of the bag and where it is bought. The substance itself is sealed tight in small, shiny bags about the size of a sugar or tea bag.
On the streets where this drug is slowly claiming our youths, the tags vary; ‘Loud’, ‘Tobacco’, ‘Colorado’, ‘Lamba’ and codine.
“Some of the short term effects on the mind include but aren’t limited to; unresponsiveness, loss of consciousness, confusion, altered time sense, extreme anxiety, panic attacks, severe paranoia, delusions, hallucinations, psychosis and potential suicide”.
In cities like Lagos, Port-hartcort and Abuja where spice is already a major problem, there are entire groups of the homeless, poor, delinquent, wanderers and yahoo boys who use the drug in groups during smoking sessions in not-so-secluded places.
Locals call them “ OJA”.
The name comes from the ‘zombie-like’ state they enter after using the drug, where they seem to lose all capacity to understand, process information and make decisions, some goes into temporary madness.
In all fairness, the spread of synthesis weeds has come faster than was first feared, but the dangers that it poses demand that efforts against it move even quicker.
Today, it’s just a drug that has put a number of people in the hospital, but there’s nothing to stop it from becoming a full blown epidemic.
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