By Femi Babafemi
53-year-old physically challenged man, Ehiarimwiam Osaromo Emmanuel, has been arrested by operatives of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency, NDLEA, at the departure hall of the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Ikeja Lagos for drug trafficking.
Ehiarimwiam was arrested on Sunday 28th August on his way to Italy, via Doha on a Qatar Airways flight.
An indigene of Orhionmwon Local Government Area of Edo State, he was found to have concealed five thousand (5,000) tablets of Tramadol, 225mg in his luggage.
Preliminary investigation reveals that the suspect is a frequent traveller who often travels with lots of bags containing mainly food items, body cream, hair attachment and drinks.
The suspect was said to have presented his usual large consignment to NDLEA operatives for search but held on to some packages, which were retrieved from him and properly searched during which the drugs were discovered.
As part of ongoing efforts to demobilise and dismantle all organised criminal groups behind the production and distribution of crystal methamphetamine across the country, NDLEA operatives on Monday 29th August raided a suspected clandestine laboratory at Opic estate, Agbara, Lagos.
Clues from the property led operatives to another in the vicinity where one Peter James was apprehended with some quantity of the substance.
A follow up operation within the estate also led to the arrest of a meth dealer, Mathew Bobby Imonitie, who was caught with 4.033 kilograms of the illicit substance.
A raid at a rented apartment in Raji Rasaki First estate in Festac town, Lagos on Saturday 27th August led to the seizure of 412,780 tablets of Tramadol and the arrest of one of the suspects involved, Kingsley Duru.
In the same vein, troops of 81 Division of the Nigerian Army have handed over to the Lagos Command of NDLEA, Seven Hundred and Ninety Two (792) blocks of cannabis sativa smuggled from the Volta region of Ghana into Ogun State but intercepted at a checkpoint along the Ilaro-Benin Republic border.
In Niger state, NDLEA operatives on Thursday 1st September intercepted a truck conveying animal feeds from Lagos to Kaduna with four hundred and forty nine (449) compressed blocks and one hundred and eleven (111) bags of cannabis sativa weighing 1,531kg belonging to a dealer in Zaria.
The drug consignment was said to have been loaded into the truck in Akure, Ondo state.
The truck driver, Yahaya Sani, his assistant Samaila Rabiu, his motor boy Bilal Ibrahim, representative of the cannabis owner, Awolu Isyaku and a passenger Mustapha Abdulrahman were all arrested.
In Gombe State, operatives intercepted Eight Hundred and Eleven Thousand (811,000) tablets of Tramadol, Diazepam and Exol 5 weighing 150kg in a vehicle loaded in Onitsha, Anambra state at Ahmadu-Kafi area of Gombe.
In Ondo, NDLEA operatives combing the Ala forest in Akure North Local Government Area for a drug lord have intercepted eight suspected bandits terrorizing farmers in the area.
Those arrested include: Austin Dickson, 47, who is the gang leader; Sunday Adekunle, 31; Kayode Oluwaseun, 29; Kolawole Kazeem, 33; Oladimeji Makinde, 37; Emeka Charles, 46; Ojo Oluwadare, 40; and Lanre Oluwajana, 44.
The suspected bandits were nabbed on Friday, 2nd September 2022.
Recovered from them include twenty five (25) bags of cannabis sativa weighing 296kgs; Six (6) explosive devices; six (6) cartridges; four (4) motorcycles and assorted charms used in terrorising farmers in the forest.
In Sokoto, operatives on Saturday 3rd Sept intercepted a commercial bus from which two five CD loader players were recovered along Sokoto-Bodinga road.
Upon search, 5.5kgs of cannabis were discovered inside the CD players and the owner, Nasiru Ibrahim arrested while in another bus, a suspected bandit Sani Ibrahim, 37 was arrested with some ammunition and cannabis sativa along Kware road.
An Abuja businesswoman, Onyinye Nwoke, 38, has been arrested following an intelligence-led raid at her residence, House 56, Aldenco Estate, Galadimawa, where operatives uprooted fresh stems of cannabis plants grown at the backyard of the house.
The uprooted plants weighed 18.4kgs while 800grams of cannabis seeds were also recovered from the house.
Chairman/Chief Executive of NDLEA, Brigadier General Mohamed Buba Marwa (Retired) commended the officers and men of the MMIA, Lagos, Niger, Sokoto, Ondo, FCT and Gombe Commands for the arrests and seizures.
He charged them and their compatriots across the country to intensify the heat on drug cartels in Nigeria while balancing their efforts on supply reduction with drug demand reduction activities.
@views exclusive rights: Femi Babafemi, Director, Media and Advocacy, NDLEA, Headquarters, Abuja, Sunday 4th September 2022.