Michael Olugbode in Abuja
The Chairman/Chief Executive Officer of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), Brig. Gen. Buba Marwa (rtd), has charged newly trained personnel of the agency to be ready for deployment to stand firm and reject insidious temptations that will come their way from drug barons and cartels.
Speaking at the passing out parade of 2,500 newly trained narcotic agents and narcotic assistants in Katsina on Thursday, Marwa reminded the new personnel that they can’t afford to compromise on their work because their efforts will directly impact the safety and well-being of their families, communities, and the country at large.
He said: “I believe that before you reported at the Academy, you must have read and heard about the good works of NDLEA officers. Today, the door is open for you to contribute your quota. NDLEA has a storied history of dedication and resilience in the face of adversity. We are in a new epoch in which we approach the fight against drug trafficking organisations with an indomitable spirit and determination to break their stranglehold on society.
“In the renewed war on illicit drugs, NDLEA is employing the latest techniques, technologies, and intelligence to curb the menace. Hence, I can assure you that you are coming into the Agency at a time when the job has become challenging but exciting and gratifying as well.”
Marwa, who was represented at the ceremony by his Special Adviser, Col. Yakubu Bako (rtd), said the agency launched an offensive action to put traffickers and barons on the defensive, while equally promoting a War Against Drug Abuse (WADA) social advocacy campaign with long-term objectives of preventing drug abuse in the society.
According to him, “In the pursuit of the solemn duties of our mandate, it is vital for you to recognise and vehemently reject the insidious temptations of bribery and corruption that often accompany the drug trade. Drug traffickers and their cohorts, who readily use the trap of financial gain to push their nefarious objectives, would attempt to compromise the integrity of anti-narcotic law enforcement officers. Therefore, the officers and men of NDLEA must remain impervious to these temptations.
“We should be reminded at all times that the fight against drug traffickers is a noble cause rooted in the unwavering commitment to eradicate the suffering and devastation caused by the illicit drug trade. Corruption and bribery have no place in this mission, and you must not only resist these temptations but actively expose and report any attempts of compromise. Bear in mind at all times that the consequences of falling into the abyss of corruption have far-reaching implications for the society you all have sworn to protect.
“Therefore, I implore you to stand firm in the face of these temptations, to act with integrity, and to uphold the core values of NDLEA. Our duty is sacred. Our commitment is a beacon of hope for victims of the drug scourge. Our loyalty to the cause, therefore, should be absolute and unalloyed.”
He further told the new personnel that “in rejecting corruption and upholding our commitment, we are not only defending the well-being of our nation but also preserving the moral fabric of our society and ensuring that justice prevails”.
To the larger society, Marwa said: “We all owe a duty to this country to rid it of the drug menace and safeguard its corporate existence. We must bear in mind that it is our society, children, youths and indeed, our culture and future that are under attack and in danger of being corrupted by the illicit drug culture.
“Hence, we need to rise in unison against this dreaded monster. Your support to NDLEA, especially through the supply of useful intelligence, will go a long way in stemming the tide of abuse and trafficking of illicit drugs in our country.”
The NDLEA boss expressed appreciation to the government and people of Katsina; the Emir of Katsina, Abdulmumini Kabir Usman; the management and staff of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC); management and staff of the Federal Medical Centre (FMC), Katsina, as well as the Commandant and instructors of NDLEA Academy for their support and assistance towards the success of the training.
The ceremony, which was well attended by high-ranking officers from various security agencies, include march past, demonstration of basic anti-narcotic operations skills and presentation of awards to outstanding cadets.
Dignitaries at the event included Alhaji Abdullahi Garba Faskari, Secretary to the Katsina State Government, who represented Governor Dikko Umar Radda; the Speaker of the state House of Assembly, Hon. Nasir Daura, who led other members of the assembly; and the representatives of the Emir of Katsina.