By Oluchi Chibuzor
The Murtala Mohammed International Airport Command of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), has revealed that it arrested 60 suspects and made a total seizure of 3413.463 kilograms of illicit drugs with Khat leaves, tramadol, cocaine topping the chart in its 2020 year-in-review.
The command also said that it has made several arrests and seized 13kg, 7.8kg and 117grams of illicit drugs in 2021.
The Commandant of the NDLEA Airport Command, Mr. Ahmadu Garba, also disclosed to journalists that the agency’s partnership with the UK border force, the British National Crime Agency, paved the way for the creation of Joint Border Task Force Project (JBTF).
Garba said: “During the year 2020, the command made a total seizure of 3413.463 kilograms (kgs) of illicit drugs comprising of cocaine, methamphetamine, cannabis sativa, khat leaves, ephedrine as well as psychotropic substances. A total number of sixty (60) suspects were arrested. After due investigation, these suspects were charged to the Federal High Court and arraigned for prosecution, forty-four (44) were convicted.”
Also annual summary of the drug seizes in 2020 showed that khat leaves with 2993.350kg, tramadol 158.632kg, cannabis Sativa 103.84kg, cocaine 51.404kg, methamphetamine 19.935kg, which represented 87.70 percent, 4.65 percent, 3.04 percent, 1.51 percent, 0.58 percent of the seizures respectively. Others includes; ephedrine 19.811kg, diazepam 42kg and nitrazepam 24.491kg,
He also said that “on January 6, 2021, operatives of the NDLEA at Murtala Muhammed International Airport Lagos arrested one Okeke Uchenna Aloy Pascal with 13kg of cocaine cleverly concealed in packet shirts. The said Okeke is a second time drug offender and also fugitive wanted by Federal High Court Lagos for jumping bail for a drug related offence in 2014.Mr.
“In a similar fashion, Mr. Azubuike Jeremaih Emeka was also arrested on January 8, 2021, with 7.8kg of cocaine neatly concealed in an embroidery (tailoring) material. Both suspects were apprehended during the inward clearance of passengers on Ethiopian Airline from Brazil.
“Also, Abdul Musa a freight forwarder was arrested on January 8, 2021 with 117grams of cocaine destined for India at SAHCO export cargo shed. The hard drug was wrapped and concealed in a hair relaxer labeled Ozone.”
One of the suspects, Okeke, said: “One of my friends told me if I am traveling I should help him and take the bag to his brother.”