Anti-narcotics Agency arrests 8 drug peddlers

Salihu Ali, Abuja 

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At least eight people have been arrested by operatives of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency, NDLEA.

The peddlers were arrested over attempts to import hundreds of cocaine pellets into Nigeria and export thousands of Tramadol tablets among other illicit drugs to Europe through the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, NAIA, Abuja; Akanu Ibiam International Airport, AIIA, Enugu, and Murtala Muhammed International Airport, MMIA, Lagos.

The Director Media and advocacy of the agency Mr. Femi Babafemi  revealed this in a press statement in Abuja on Sunday.

He said, the arrests and seizures began on Sunday 17th July when a 52-year-old father of three, Okwo Paul Okechukwu, was arrested upon his arrival from Addis Ababa, Ethiopia via an Ethiopian airline flight at the Abuja airport for ingesting 76 pellets of cocaine.

In the same vein, another father of three, Lawrence Chijioke, 42, was arrested at the Abuja airport in the Nation’s Capital, same day in an operational synergy between NDLEA and Nigeria Customs Service at the NAIA.

“Chijioke, who hails from Umuahia in Umuahia LGA, Abia state was arrested during an inward clearance of Ethiopian Airline flight from Addis Ababa with 529 pellets of cocaine weighing 11.70kg concealed in his bag.”

NDLEA operatives also on Saturday 23rd July arrested 29-year-old Ms. Onuorah Caritas Onyinye at the Enugu airport upon arrival on Ethiopian airline flight from Addis Ababa.

“A search of her luggage led to the discovery of 2.192kilograms of cocaine concealed in two designers women handbags with false linings, the statement read.

Also, attempts by drug traffickers to export different illicit drugs through the NAHCO export shed at the Lagos airport Southern Nigeria to Europe and United Arab Emirate were also frustrated by officers and men of the Agency.

“The operatives on Monday 18th July intercepted some illicit substances concealed in a consolidated cargo going to Dubai, UAE.”

Also same day, Monday 18th July, the bid by an Italy-bound passenger Tony Osas to export 10, 250 tablets of Tramadol 255mg to Europe through the Lagos airport was foiled by NDLEA operatives who intercepted him at gate B departure hall during outward clearance of passengers on a Turkish airline flight to Milan.

In Kaduna Northern Nigeria, “a driver Jamilu Lawal, was arrested on Sunday 17th July along Abuja-Kaduna express road, with 157,000 tablets of Diazepam weighing 37.5kg. A follow up operation same day led to the arrest of the actual owner of the consignment, Abubakar Isiyaku, in Katsina. Another suspect, Isah Mohammed, was equally arrested same day in Kano during a follow up operation, after the interception of his consignment, 2,500kg rubber solution (solvent) locally called Shalisha in Kaduna.”

In Abuja the Nation’s Capital, “no fewer than four persons were arrested over 345.4kg cannabis seizures in the FCT.”

In Sokoto Northern Nigeria, “operatives on stop and search operation along Gusau-Sokoto road arrested one Tochukwu Joseph Oranusi with 20,100 tabs of Rohypnol inside a commercial bus coming from Onitsha, Anambra state.” 

In Anambra Southern Nigeria, “a suspect Azubuike Ogbanu was arrested with 76 cups of Arizona, 172 sachets of skunk, 82 pinches of methamphetamine, 20 sachets of Loud, and 10 wraps of Colorado when his base, Loren hostel, Ifite, Awka, was raided by operatives on Thursday 21st July.”

While commending the officers and men of the affected Commands for the arrests, seizures and their tenacity, the Chief Executive Officer of NDLEA, Brig. Gen. Mohamed Buba Marwa (Rtd) urged them and their colleagues across the country to remain steadfast in pursuit of the Agency’s goal of ridding all parts of Nigeria of illicit substances.