27th September, 2022
The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) on Tuesday set ablaze 1.8 tons of cocaine seized by the agency in Lagos last week.
The 1.8 tons of cocaine has a street value of $278, 250,000, equivalent to N194.77 billion.
Chairman/Chief Executive of NDLEA, Brig. Gen. Mohamed Buba Marwa (Retd) supervised the burning of the drugs in Badagry on Tuesday.
He assured that tougher time awaited drug dealers in the country.
The NDLEA had in a well-coordinated and intelligence led operation that lasted two days last week stormed a hidden warehouse at 6 Olukunola street, Solebo estate Ikorodu where 1.8 tons of cocaine were recovered and five suspects including a Jamaican were arrested.
Following the historical seizure, which is the largest in the Agency’s history, an order of the Federal High Court in Lagos was obtained for the public destruction of the consignment.
Speaking at the venue of the public destruction in Badagry area of Lagos Tuesday, Marwa who was represented by the Agency’s Director, Prosecution and Legal Services, Deputy Commander General of Narcotics, DCGN Sunday Joseph, said the sheer volume of the drug haul, spoke volume about the extent of the nefarious activities of the drug underworld.
He said this has made it imperative for Nigerians to continue to support NDLEA in the renewed war against illicit drugs.
He said out of the 1.8-ton seizure, 1, 828 blocks of the cocaine would be crushed and set ablaze while the remnant would be secured for purpose of prosecution of the suspects who were brought to witness the procedure and sign the certificate of destruction.
According to the NDLEA boss, the Agency is proceeding with the prosecution of those arrested in connection with this consignment.
“On this, the public can rest assured that NDLEA shall pursue the trial to a logical conclusion. Since January 25, 2021, when we commenced our offensive action against drug traffickers, the Agency has secured record convictions,” he said.
Marwa disclosed that presently, 2, 904 drug offenders were serving various jail terms, while other cases were ongoing in court, “which we are confident will end in positive results too.”
To the drug underworld, he said the bust of the syndicate responsible for the cocaine warehoused in Ikorodu was a message to drug cartels that their investments in the illicit drug trade would go up in flames.
Marwa said the fact that the Ikorodu operation was conducted clinically without any skirmish or bloodshed was further testimony to the evolution of the NDLEA and its new capabilities, and a pointer to the fact that the game has changed in the war against illicit drugs.
He expressed appreciation to the Agency’s international partners, especially the American Drug Enforcement Administration (US-DEA) that supported the cocaine syndicate bust and the Nigerian military that provided additional firepower during the operation, as well as other law enforcement agencies that have been supporting efforts to rid Nigeria of illicit drugs.