•Razes 3 tonnes of cannabis in Edo

By Emma Njoku and Godwin Tsa, Abuja

The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) has detained a 35-year-old lady, Chidinma Chinenye Agbazue, for attempting to export 20 parcels of cannabis sativa weighing 10.70 kilograms, which she concealed in African salad, popularly called Abacha, and dried vegetables en route to Doha, Qatar, through the Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMIA), Ikeja, Lagos State.

Director, Media and Advocacy, NDLEA, Femi Babafemi, who made the disclosure in a statement, yesterday, said officers of the agency at the Lagos airport, working in partnership with men of the Department of State Security (DSS), had, last Thursday, intercepted Chidinma, an outbound passenger from Lagos to Doha, on Qatar Airways, during clearance of passengers at the screening point of terminal 11 of the MMIA.

“Preliminary investigation revealed that Chidinma was based in Qatar, but returned to Nigeria last December for Christmas celebration. She said preparatory to her return to Doha, she was lodged at Club Dice Hotel, in the Ikotun area of Lagos, where the consignment was handed over to her for trafficking to the Arab country,” Babafemi said.

“Two suspects: Monday Okeke and Chigozie Emeka, were arrested last Tuesday, March 26, by NDLEA operatives in the Oniwaya, Yaba and Agege area of Lagos, where NDLEA operatives recovered from them 842,560 pills of opioids, especially tramadol, in addition to 15 litres of codeine syrup and 596 grams of Molly. Attempt by Okeke to bribe the NDLEA officers with N5 million cash was rebuffed, while the money was documented as part of exhibits to prosecute the suspects in court,” he added.

In Bayelsa, the bid by three suspects: Ebuka Eze, 31; Ugochukwu Okoro, 44; and Kingsley Uzim, 27, to smuggle opioids, including codeine, molly, tramadol and diazepam weighing a total of 73.425 kilograms to the creeks in the Southern Ijaw area of the state was thwarted last Wednesday, by NDLEA operatives at Swali jetty, Yenagoa, where Ebuka and Ugochukwu were arrested, while Uzim was nabbed at Amasoma in a follow up operation. The drugs were concealed in jumbo sacks and conveyed to the jetty in a tricycle.

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While two suspects: Eniola Muyideen and Bankole Shuaib, were arrested with 137 blocks of cannabis weighing 71kg during a raid at Orile Imo, Ogun State, last Friday, NDLEA operatives in Taraba recovered 39,980 pills of tramadol from a suspect, Abubakar Mohammed, 33, in Lankaviri village, and another suspect, Apaji Vincent, 29, arrested in Wukari, last Thursday, with 131kg cannabis sativa.

In Abia State, Nwachukwuu Chinedu, 28, was arrested last Friday, at Akara Ahuba, Isikwuato LGA by NDLEA officers. Recovered from him include 46.65kg cannabis and different quantities of tramadol, methamphetamine and rohypnol as well as N71,500 monetary exhibit.

At least, 127.5kg cannabis loaded in a Volkswagen Vento saloon car marked NTT 215 AA was recovered along Isua-Kabba road, Idoani area of Ose LGA, Ondo State, while a 30-year-old female suspect, Chinasa Christopher, was arrested with 400 bottles of codeine syrup in the Sabon Gari area of Kano. The owner of a consignment of illicit drugs intercepted along Zaria-Kano road, Bakura Goni, was arrested at Mile 2 market in Lagos, last Tuesday, in a follow up operation and flown to Kano to face charges. The consignment, consisting of cannabis and tramadol weighing 73.8kg, was earlier seized in a truck conveying it from Lagos to Kano.

While 278kg of cannabis going to Idoani in Ondo State was recovered during a raid at Oloma-Okpe forest, Akoko-Edo LGA, Edo State, not less than 3,065.255kg of the same psychoactive substance was razed on two farms at Amahor waterside forest in the Igueben area of the state, where three suspects: James Thankgod; Wisdom James and Akpa Festus, were arrested last Thursday.

In the same vein, Commands across the country intensified their War Against Drug Abuse (WADA), advocacy lectures in the past week. These include: sensitisation lectures for students of the Federal University of Technology, Ihiagwa, Owerri, Imo; students and teachers of Community Secondary School, Eyo-Abasi, Oron, Akwa Ibom; students and teachers of Oke Iragbiji Grammar School, Osun; commercial motorcycle riders in Oye Ekiti, Ekiti State; commercial motorcycle riders at Ankpa, Kogi State and Muslim faithful at Aliade Central Mosque, Aliade, Benue State.

While commending the officers and men of the MMIA, Lagos, Edo, Ogun, Kano, Abia, Bayelsa, Ondo, and Taraba Commands of the agency for their balanced efforts in the past week, Chairman/Chief Executive Officer of NDLEA, Brig. Gen. Buba Marwa (retd), equally applauded their counterparts across the country for intensifying their WADA advocacy lectures.