From Godwin Tsa, Abuja
National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) operatives embedded in two courier companies in Lagos have intercepted illicit drugs concealed in the statue of the Virgin Mary and auto spare parts heading to Canada and the UAE.
In another raid, the agency has seized 337.702 kg of illicit drugs in Ondo and Akwa Ibom states.
The narcotics agents from the Directorate of Operations and General Investigations seized 500 grammes of heroin going to Canada and hidden inside auto spare parts from one of the courier firms, while 140 grammes of methamphetamine headed for the Philippines and concealed inside statue of the Virgin Mary was seized in another courier company.
According to a statement on Saturday by the Director, Media and Advocacy Femi Babafemi, the Director, Operations and General Investigations, Adeyemi Adeofe, disclosed that ‘3.1 kg of cannabis going to UAE concealed inside spices, and another kilogramme of cannabis going to UAE concealed inside local herbs were intercepted and seized.’
In a related development, the Ondo State Command of the Agency has in series of raids between 6th and 20th April, 2021, across the state arrested 31 suspects from whom 275.552 kg of assorted illicit drugs were recovered.
According to the acting Commander of the State Command, Callys Alumona, ‘the sting operations were carried out to curb the increasing rate of drug abuse among the youths and even the elderly in Ondo State.’
He said ‘this has led to the arrest of 31 suspects, which include 24 males, and 7 females.’ He added that the illicit drugs seized ‘consist of 74.285 kg of cannabis sativa, 267 grammes of psychotropic substances; 201 kg of skuchies (a combination of cannabis, tramadol, ethanol, and zobo), while many of the drug spots have been dismantled.’
Meanwhile, operatives of the Akwa Ibom State Command of the Agency have intercepted and seized 62.150kg of illicit drugs in Oron and Uyo areas of the state. The state Commander of the NDLEA, Mrs Obot Bassey, said four suspects were arrested in the sting two operations carried out on Thursday, April 22 and 23.
The Chairman/Chief Executive of the Agency, Brig General Mohamed Buba Marwa (retd) in his reaction commended the officers and men of Operations and General Investigations Directorate as well as those of Ondo and Akwa Ibom states for their steadfastness and commitment to the new operational maxim of offensive action. He charged them to stay focused and do more to rid every part of the country of the scourge of drug abuse and trafficking.