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NDLEA seizes drugs, cash worth over N130bn, arrests 12,306 suspects in 2021

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Worries as youths abuse other substances after ban on Tramadol

The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) has disclosed that it seized drugs and cash worth over N130 billion between January and December 2021 nationwide.

According to the NDLEA Chairman, Brig.-Gen. Buba Marwa (rtd.), the agency also arrested 12,306 suspects, including seven drug barons within the same period.

Marwa gave the figures at a media briefing to mark his one year in office on Monday in Abuja. He was appointed by President Muhammadu Buhari on Jan. 17, 2021 and assumed duty.

He further disclosed that the agency convicted 1,400 offenders with 1,502 cases pending in court.

He said, “We can take solace in the fact that our achievements of 2021 surpassed the records of any given year in the last three decades.

READ ALSO: NDLEA seizes 1.5m capsules of Tramadol in Edo

“In drug supply reduction, our interdiction efforts yielded unparalleled results, which as of Dec. 31, 2021, we also seized over 3.4million kilogrammes of assorted drugs.

“We destroyed 406 hectares of cannabis farms and contributed to the consolidated account through asset forfeiture with 7, 761 drug users counselled and rehabilitated in NDLEA facilities,” he said.

Marwa noted that some of the seizures include 451,807 captagon tablets, weighing 71.119kg in September 2021 at Apapa Seaport, Lagos. “This was the first-ever recorded seizure of the drug in the West and Central African regions,” he added.

He recalled that 1,994, 400 capsules of Tramadol were seized in February 2021 at the Apapa Port, while another 144, 400 bottles of Codeine syrup were confiscated in March.

“Another seizure of 32.9kg of cocaine was recorded in October, 2021. 43.11kg of cocaine was seized in February 2021 at the Tin Can Seaport and another 22, 590kg of Codeine syrup was seized by the NDLEA at the Port in September, 2021.

“4,996,200 capsules of Tramadol, weighing 2 ,498kg, were impounded in May 2021 at the Onne Port and another 100,000 (100ml) bottles of Codeine cough syrups weighing 15, 325 kg in 500 cartons were intercepted at the port in June 2021.

“In December 2021 alone, over 34,000kg of cannabis smuggled from Ghana, were intercepted at the Eko Atlantic City Beach, while more than 8.3 million capsules and tablets of Tramadol were seized in Lagos a week before Christmas.

“Just last week, about 1.5 million capsules of the same drug, loaded in Onitsha, Anambra, heading to Kebbi and Kano States were also intercepted by our men in Edo,” he said.

Marwa assured that the agency was committed to its mandate of ensuring a drug-free Nigeria.

By Oluwatobi Odeyinka

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