Nigeria’s drug menace worsens

By Paul Michael and Friday Omosola (Akure)

  • NDLEA arrests 51 suspects in Kano raid, 4 notorious trans-border traffickers in Adamawa, Ondo
  • Intercepts 2.7m Tramadol tabs, seizes tons of illicit substances in FCT, others
  • I’ll die if I confess who sent me – Suspect

Operatives of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) have arrested 51 suspects for drug related offences in Kano State.

Director of Media and Advocacy, Femi Babafemi, disclosed this one Sunday in a statement made available to The Trumpet, saying the suspects were arrested in a raid at a restaurant. “In Kano, 51 suspects were arrested in a raid at Sky restaurant in Nasarawa area of the state on Friday 29th July.

The suspects were caught with various quantities of cannabis and codeinebased cough syrup,” Babafemi stated. He further disclosed that no fewer than four notorious trans-border drug dealers were arrested in Adamawa by the Agency.

“In Adamawa state, four notorious drug dealers in Konkol and Belel, two villages at Nigeria – Cameroon border have been arrested for exporting and retailing Tramadol and importing Diazepam into the country,” he said.

He gave the names of the suspects as Kabiru Ahmadu, Eric Emil, Abdulmumini Bapetel and Alphonsus Yusuf while stating that a total of 59.018kg of Tramadol, Diazepam, Exol-5, Cannabis Sativa and two jerry cans of formalin substance (Suck & Die) were recovered from them.

Meanwhile, no fewer than 2,750,000 tablets of Tramadol 225mg weighing 1,650 kilograms worth about N1.375 billion were intercepted at the Apapa port in Lagos by NDLEA’s operatives.

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According to Babafemi, “The consignment packed in 55 cartons of Tapentadol and Carisoprodol types of Tramadol was seized during the examination of a container number SUDU 7538656 on Saturday 30th July following credible intelligence.”

In a similar development, anti-narcotic officers at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMIA) Ikeja thwarted bids by drug traffickers to export various psychoactive substances to London, UK and Dubai, UAE through the Lagos airport in the past week. “At least, five suspects have so far been arrested in connection to the attempts,” Babafemi stated.

He further said, “On Monday 25th July, a Dubai, UAE bound passenger Ms Ebhodaghei Gloria Osenemeshen was intercepted during the outward clearance of travellers on Rwanda Air via Kigali to Dubai. Discovered in her luggage were sachets of Tramadol 225mg concealed inside garri, a cassava product packed among other foodstuffs.

“She, however, claimed that the bag was given to her by someone who she passed the night in his house before coming to the airport to help deliver to another person in Dubai.

“The following day, Tuesday 26th July, a total of 50 blocks of cannabis Sativa with a total weight of 27.1kg concealed inside large quantity of crayfish going to London, UK as part of a consolidated cargo were seized at the SAHCO export shed. “Same day, a Dubaibound female passenger, Emebradu Precious Rachael, was arrested with 1.8kg cannabis packed inside bitter leaf in her luggage while attempting to board Rwanda Air flight to UAE via Kigali.

“The mother of one who hails from Oghara in Ethiope West Local Government Area of Delta State said she was into selling of men’s wears before she decided to travel to Dubai to expand her clothing business. She claimed her ex-boyfriend that lives in Dubai, requested her to bring the bag, which contains the illicit substance along with foodstuff.

“In the same vein, operatives at the NAHCO import shed of the airport on Saturday 30th July evacuated cartons of khat leaf with a total weight of 51.50kg. The consignment had earlier come in from Sierra Leone on Royal Air Moroc flight.” The spokesperson also disclosed that no fewer than 90 blocks of cannabis (48.2kg) and 700grams of methamphetamine were intercepted at Jabi motor park in Abuja. “A suspect has been arrested in connection with the drug exhibits,” he added.

Also, no less than 4,010 ampoules of pentazocine injection were seized on Friday 29th July when a commercial vehicle with registration number Sokoto RBA 220 XA was intercepted along Yawuri – Kebbi road in Kebbi State. Two suspects, Muktar Yunusa, 26 and Lukman Aliyu, 30, arrested.

While earlier in a raid operation in Oko-Olowo area of Ilorin on Tuesday 26th July led to the arrest of Onaolapo Zakariyau, 50, with 79kg cannabis sativa. Commending men and officers of the anti-narcotics Agency, Chairman/Chief Executive Officer of NDLEA, Brig Gen Mohamed Buba Marwa (Rtd) urged them to remain resolute in pursuit of the Agency’s goal of ridding Nigeria of illicit substances.

Meanwhile, in a related development a 25-yearold Destiny Agbaijoh, a suspected killer, arrested by the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) in Ondo State, has disclosed that he would die if he divulged his mission and the identity of his sponsors.

Recall that The Trumpet had earlier reported that Destiny was arrested with one AK-47, one pump action, 91 bullets of 5.56 mm, 16 cartridges and cash of N347,000. Destiny, who said he was a timber trader, stated this after he was paraded in Akure, the state capital. He said he did not take the bag which contained an AK-47, one pump action, 91 bullets of 5.56 mm, 16 cartridges and cash of N347,000 to the Police station because he never knew it would bring problems for him.

“I saw it in a bush in the place where I am working. I saw it in a nylon bag they used to wrap it and I carried it to my village. I didn’t know it would cause me problems. I was coming from Bayelsa State and was going to my home town after Agadagba, in Ese-Odo Council area of Ondo State. The money is my own and it was from my timber business.”

The State Commandant of the NDLEA, Mr Kayode Raji, while parading the suspect, said the suspect was arrested during a stop and search operation along Ore-Okitipupa Road. Raji added that the suspect tried to bribe his men on duty with the cash found on him, which his men rejected and took him into custody. According to him, “the suspect was arrested on 20th of July, along Ore Okitipupa Road by our men on stop and search operation.

Upon search, he was found with various arms and ammunition of various kinds. “He was also arrested with strap bags and we asked him what it was used for, he said he would die if he confessed it. It looks like bags where they keep dead bodies or mangled bodies of human beings. We have done our preliminary investigation and we are going to hand him over to the Nigerian Police.”

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