Nigeria govt calls for collaboration with other African countries on war against drug abuse, trafficking
Chairman of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), Brig. Gen. Mohamed Buba Marwa (Retd), has called for strengthened collaboration between African countries in the war against drug trafficking and abuse.
Marwa, who spoke on Wednesday at the ongoing 30th Conference of Heads of Drug Law Enforcement Agencies Africa (HONLEA) in Nairobi, Kenya, also harped on effective exchange of intelligence among countries to curtail the trend.
The NDLEA boss at the conference gave the briefing on the success recorded so far in addressing the problem and demanded more national mechanism to sustain the effort.
Marwa expressed optimism that the proposed synergy will facilitate the speedy dismantling of drug trafficking cartels across on Africa continent.
He said: “The starting point is the harnessing of all the stakeholders by the national drug focal agency. Through this national coordination and collaborative effort, Nigeria has steadily made significant efforts in tackling drug challenges and has between January 2021 and August 2022, recorded unprecedented arrests, in the region of 21,302 suspected drug traffickers, including 28 drug barons.
Read also:NDLEA alerts Nigerians to new deadly drug, Fentanyl
“In the area of prosecution, the agency has secured 3,111 convictions, and seized 5.4 million kilograms of illicit substances. On Drug Demand Reduction, the Agency within the same period had brief interventions, counselling/rehabilitation for over 12,326 drug users.
“The global drug problem has placed higher demands on countries to work round the clock to achieve this goal and consolidate the achievements recorded. It is on the above premise that my delegation is proposing strengthened collaboration at both regional and sub-regional levels.
“This noble objective could be realized with the creation of an informal network of HONLEA contact persons to complement and enhance real time exchange of intelligence or operational information. It will also enhance more robust activities all year round. At the sub-regional level, countries should endeavour to establish sub-regional group like HONLEA for strengthened collaboration under the auspices of the regional economic communities.
“The HONLEA platform offers unlimited opportunities, and it is imperative to maximize these amazing benefits by completing it with practical form of cooperation such as the suggested HONLEA Informal Network of Contact Persons.
“This would enable regular bilateral meetings, training programs, exchange of intelligence, and the conduct of joint operations at sub-regional and regional levels, if need be.”
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