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AWARENESS AND FACTORS THAT INFLUENCE DRUGS ABUSE AMONG OFFICERS AND MEN OF NIGERIA CUSTOMS SERVICE HEADQUARTERS WUSE ZONE 3 ABUJA
Drug abuse at the workplace poses a great challenge to the growth and development of the law enforcement in Nigeria. Presently, about 200 million people or 5 per cent of the world‟s population aged 15 to 64 use drugs. In Nigeria it is estimated that 5,835,007 of the youth population abuse drugs. This study sought to assess the effects of drug abuse on work performance of employees in selected Nigeria Customs Service headquarters at Abuja. The objectives of this study were to determine the extent to which drug abuse influences: workplace absenteeism, accidents and the level of job productivity among employees in the Customs Services. The study adopted a descriptive survey design. Data were processed and analyzed qualitatively and quantitatively. Quantitative analysis used descriptive and inferential statistics with the aid of a computer programme – Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) version 15. The study findings indicate that there was a significant relationship between the frequency of use of drugs and extent of absenteeism among employees (χ2 = 28.00, p = 0.000 < 0.05). Consequently, drug abuse – related absenteeism due to lost man hours and labour days costs the employers $8,100,000 per year. There was also a significant relationship between the frequency of use of drugs and frequency of accidents among employees (χ2 = 18.619, p = 0.001 < 0.05). Forty point one percent respondents reported average accidents at the workplace as a result of alcohol and drug abuse. The results further revealed that the twenty five Customs Services spent $1,250,000 on workman‟s compensation due to drug abuse -related accidents at the workplace per year. There was no significant relationship between the frequency of use of drugs and level of job productivity (χ2 = 8.154, p = 0.086 > 0.05). From the findings of this study, it is concluded that alcohol and drug abuse impact negatively on the Customs Service employees in terms of direct and indirect costs. In view of this, the study recommends that there is need for the law enforcement in liaison with stakeholders to institute stringent policy mechanisms and capacity development programmes to curb alcohol and drug abuse among Customs Service employees.
1.1 Background Information
Drawing heavily from various studies by Frone (2009), NACADA (2006 and 2007) and WHO (2004), a drug can be operationally defined as any chemical substance which when taken into the body can affect one or more of the body‟s functions. This includes those substances that are useful to the body and those that harm the body. Some are licit drugs i.e. their sales do not violate the law, while others are illicit i.e. their possession, sale, use or purchase is generally prohibited by law. Gmel and Rehm (2003); Moore et al., (2009), and Sanjay (2001) further distinguish drug abuse from substance abuse and conclude that; whereas drug abuse refers to the use of illegal drugs or the inappropriate use of legal drugs, substance abuse includes a wider range of abused chemicals.
Drug abuse adversely affects workplace performance in any industry. The effects can be felt in terms of real monetary costs from tardiness, sick days, turnover, insurance claims, and the hidden time costs associated with diverted managerial time, co-worker friction and most importantly, the reputation in the public eye (Bayer and Waverly, 2005; Frone, 2006 a). Operations at the workplace require alertness, accurate and quick reflexes. Frone (2006 b) and Ovunga and Madrama (2006) reiterates that any impairment adversely affects performance or safety at work and can cause serious accidents and interferences with accuracy and efficiency. Other effects include after-effects of drug use (hangover or withdrawal) affecting job performance; absenteeism, illness or reduced productivity; preoccupation with obtaining and using drugs, interfering with attention and concentration; illegal activities at work like peddling illicit drugs; and negative psychological effects (CCHOS, 2005; Frone, 2008; Institute
Of Alcohol Studies, 2009 and Lehman and Bennet , 2002).
Several factors contribute to the increased use of drugs, alcohol, and substances at the work place (Frone, 2009 and Goodwin, 2004). These include; job related and occupational stress (Hodgin, 2009 and Ndirangu, 2004); socialisation, leisure, and recreation purposes (Moore et al., 2009); peer pressure, advertisement by media and experimentation (Lehmann and Bennet, 2002); alienation/ isolation (Imbosa, 2002), availability and accessibility of the drugs
(Frone and Brown; 2010, Weisner et al., 2005,), religious beliefs and practices
(Shauri and Omondi, 2004 ), cultural attitudes (Ames, Curnadi, Moore and Stern, 2007, Saxena, 2003), unwanted pregnancies (Johnstone, 2000; Liska,
2004 and Von Hertzen, Piaggio and Ding, 2002 ) and weight management
The International Labour Office (ILO, 2003) reiterates that the use of illegal drugs has spread at an unprecedented rate and has permeated every part of the globe. Globally, the United Nations Office of Drug and Crime (UNDOC) estimate that about 155 – 250 million people (3.5 to 5 per cent of the world‟s population aged 15 to 64 used illicit drugs in 2008 (UNODC, World Drug Report, 2010). Out of these, alcohol causes 1.8 million deaths annually worldwide while tobacco kills 49 million people every year (WHO, 2007). Of this, 55 per cent are men while 45per cent are women. A national research carried out in Columbia in 2003 by students of Columbia University, revealed that drug abuse is lower in women than in men (as cited by NACADA, 2006). Out of the 1,209,938 drug abuse cases reported 553,874 (45 per cent) were women while 656,064 (55 per cent) were men (as cited by NACADA, 2006).
Research shows that drug abuse negatively impact workplace performance. For example, in Costa Rica, 30 per cent of absenteeism and accidents were caused by alcohol dependency (Ames, Grube and Moore, 2000). Whereas drug abuse in France, is considered to cause 10 per cent to 20 per cent of accidents, in Australia, drug abusers were 2.7 times more likely to have injury-related absence than non-drug users (WHO, 2004). In Britain, 90 per cent of personnel directors blamed drug abuse for loss of productivity, health problems, absenteeism, unsafe employee relations, poor behaviour and negative company image. In the same country drug abuse contributes up to 25 per cent of accidents and around 60 per cent of fatal accidents (Hughes and Bellis, 2000). Rohman and Blum (2002) and Trapencieire (2000) estimated that alcohol reduces productivity by 10 per cent. On the overall, the largest economic direct and indirect costs often focus on four major issues: premature death/fatal accidents, injuries/accident rates, absenteeism/extra sick leave, and loss of production (Anderson and Larimer, 2002; Canada Centre for Occupational Health and Safety, 2005; Reinert and Allen, 2002 and Reingman and Gmel, 2001).
Drug abuse is therefore a pervasive problem in the law enforcement agencies (NACADAA, 2007; Moore et al., 2009). The quality of service delivery and level of effectiveness, competitiveness, and success in law enforcement depends on mannerism, and perception (Armstrong, 2003 and Johnston and Jones, 2004).
1.2 Statement of the Problem
The negative effects of drug abuse at the workplace have been documented elsewhere. There is very little empirical and documented information in developing countries on drug abuse and in law enforcement agencies (ILO and OSHA, 2001; WHO, 2004; NACADAA, 2007). The success of the law enforcement agencies depends on mannerism, and perception of the officers. Given the key role that they plays in the economy of Nigeria, it is therefore imperative to assess the effects of drug abuse on workplace performance in this sector.
1.3 Objectives of the Study
This study sought to assess the awareness and the factors affecting drug abuse amongst officiers in the law enforcement agencies in Nigeria using a survey of Nigeria Customs Service headquarters at Abuja. This broad objective was guided by the following specific objectives:
- To determine the extent to which drug abuse influence workplace absenteeism among officiers in the Nigeria Customs Service headquarters.
- To establish the impact of drug abuse on workplace accidents among officiers in the Nigeria Customs Service headquarters.
- To examine the influence of drug abuse on the level of productivity among officiers in the Nigeria Customs Service headquarters.
1.4. Null Hypotheses:
The study sought to address the following null hypotheses:
- HO1– There is no significant relationship between Drug abuse and alcoholism workplace absenteeism among officiers in the Nigeria Customs Service headquarters at abujaal region of Nigeria.
- HO2 – There is no significant relationship between Drug abuse and alcoholism workplace accidents among officiers in the Nigeria Customs Service headquarters at abuja province of Nigeria.
- HO3– There is no significant relationship between Drug abuse and alcoholism the level of productivity of officiers in the Nigeria Customs Service headquarters at Abuja.
1.5 Significance of the Study.
In order to consolidate the actual and potential benefits of the law enforcement agencies in Nigeria, empirical and detailed studies are needed to establish the influence of drug abuse among officiers in Customs Services various aspects of work performance. This study is a contribution to knowledge in this field, more so the academicians. It will add information to literature and seal gap of knowledge and give suggestion for more researches. It provides information to concerned stakeholders/business owners, including the law enforcement agencies, the government, all other linked industries and the entire society, with an overview of the real situation of drug abuse in their respective organisations. It will also aid them in assessing the challenges posed by drug abuse to the growth of this vital sector. In addition it will be useful to the various stakeholders and business owners in future in terms of formulating alcohol and drug abuse policy and as such improve the level of productivity.
1.6 Scope of the Study
The study focused on assessing the effects of drug abuse on work performance in the law enforcement agencies in Nigeria using a survey of Nigeria Customs Service headquarters at Abuja. Abuja was chosen as a research site because abujaal region is a key tourist destination receiving more than a half of international tourist arrivals and most tourism development in the country. The region was also considered to be vulnerable to drug abuse with the port of Mombasa being a major transit point for drug trafficking in Africa. The study area had 83 Nigeria Customs Service headquarters with an estimated population of 11000 officiers.
Concept of Drug/Substance Abuse
Drug abuse, also known as substance abuse, has a wide range of definitions related to taking a psychoactive drug or performance-enhancing drug for a nontherapeutic or non-medical effect (Rehm, Taylor and Room, 2006 and NACADAA, 2009).
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