Suicides: Sniper , ministry of happiness among issues Senate consider

July 10, 2019
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The federal government may soon ban the production, importation or circulation of snipers insecticide, a product currently being used to commit suicide.

A motion has been raised to that effect on the floor of the Senate, and the solutions proffered range from banning Sniper insecticide, to creating happiness ministry or department, and engaging schools and religious institutions.

Sen. Theodore Orji (PDPAbia) and 15 others moved it on Tuesday following the rising incidents of suicides in Nigeria.

While making his presentation, Orji noted said suicide could be prevented particularly when family, friends and close relatives of the person contemplating suicide provided support, either by way of encouragement, listening to them or removing means of committing suicide such as dangerous drugs and chemicals especially sniper.

According to him,  it is worrisome that the number of Nigerians taking their lives had assumed a frightening dimension, and  government, religious institutions and other relevant corporate bodies have not addressed the ugly situation in the country.

Orji said that there was need to create awareness on how to control stress and depression by government, religious institutions and other relevant corporate bodies and the establishment of trauma centres across the federation.

Sen. Bamidele Opeyemi (Ekiti) also said the issue of suicide was more of a sociological issue that has to do with depression, mental issues and poverty.

He said the Senate must interface with the executive to address the challenges in the economy by creating opportunities for employment via industrialisation and agriculture.

Contributing, Sen. Rochas Okorocha (APC-Imo) said many Nigerians were committing suicide because they were not happy.

He said the government should find out why people were not happy and why they were taking their lives.

Okorocha, therefore advocated for the creation of a government Department or Ministry of Happiness to address the problem.

Adopting the motion, the Senate also urged the federal government through the Ministry of Information, National Orientation Agency (NOA), Ministry of Health to create awareness on how to control stress and depression.

The Senate also urged the federal government through the National Universities Commission (NUC) to review the school curriculum and come up with compulsory courses that would enable students place value on their lives.

It also urged religious bodies across the federation to always preach love, peace and how to relieve stress and depression.

The Senate also said there was need to engage the executive to expand its special intervention programme of to leverage on extant schemes like the N-Power in creating economic opportunities for the vulnerable people.

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