Marwa Smash Drug Syndicate At MMIA AS NANS Backs NDLEA Planned Drug Test For University Students To Stop Abuse

 By Stephen Ubanna

  When Buba Marwa, a retired Brigadier General and former Nigerian Ambassador to South Africa, and now, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, CEO, Nigerian Drug Law Enforcement Agency, NDLEA, enjoined    Nigerians  engaged  in ’’the importation, export, Cultivation , processing, manufacture  and Consumption of Cocain and other illicit  substances to stop’’ on assumption of duties on Monday, January 18, 2021, nobody took him serious.

 This is because there had been similar call  by past Chairmen  and CEOs of the agency  to the  drug traffickers to stop the illicit  business but that was how far  they  could go.  The situation was so bad that President Muhammadu Buhari , a retired army General, was said to have set up   a Presidential Advisory Committee for the Elimination  of Drug Abuse, PACEDA, in the country,  which was  headed  by Marwa.  The Committee may have done a good job on how to stop the  drug  abuse in the country, which report had been submitted to the Katsina state born  Nigerian President.

The Nigerian President  may have known that  the only way to get the PACWDA, report could be  fully implemented without developing K-leg is to appoint  Marwa, the retired army Brigadier General, who headed the PACDA  to step into the Chairmanship position of the  agency to implement the PACEDA report.. He had his way.

This may have  given Marwa the opportunity   to declare on assumption of duties  that he will ‘’ overhaul  and expand  the agency  in line with the recommendations of the PACEDA’’ to the Nigerian President . He was said to have  also promised  to develop a strategy  of action ‘’to meet the objectives  in the National  Drug Control  Master plan,  2021 -2025, as a roadmap.’

In meeting with the   Commanders recently at his Abuja office recently, he had given them a matching ordr  ‘’ to go all out and make drug seizures’’, as a  way of depriving the dealers  their sources of supply and further discourage the  Consumes  from having access to   it. The Commanders  may have taken the o the Brigadier General’s order  very serious that they went back to the drawing board a and restrategised  on how to how to put their training on how to identity  drug peddles into practice

 This may have informed why security was tightened up securi at the seaports, airports and land borders to fish out suspected drug traffickers. Informed sources told The Value News  that the security arrangement was more pronounced  at  the Murtala Muhammed International Airport,MMIA,  Ikeja, Lagos, the nation’s Commercial nerve center described as a major of the drug syndicate in the country.

Marwa: Smash Drug Syndicate At MMIA

 The fallout was the seizures  of  a 26.840 Kg Cocain, with a market values of  about  N30 billion at the MMIA, on January 27, 2021 by a  Team  led by one Ahmadu Garba. It was said to be one of the largest single seizure of Cocain that had been  made at the busy MMIA, over the last five years.

The Cocain  seizure was said to have been made during  the ‘’inward Clearance  of an  Ethiopian  Airline Passengers  at the E wing-arrival  hall  of the airport’’ . Onyjegbu Ifesinachi Jennifer,  a 33 year-old female Passenger  who was said to have arrived  the MMIA,  from the North American country of Brazil   town of Sao Paulo , through Addis Ababa, the Ethiopian Capital, was said to have been caught with the drug . The Nigerian Ethiopian airline female passenger  was said to have been nabbed  by the agile  NDLEA Operatives at the airport based on Credible information.

She may have been  arrested  by  the agency officials  because of its standard Operating Procedure  that all Passengers  from high risk  drug countries must be profiled whenever their flight arrived any of the country’s International airports, using the Passenger’s manifest to ensure that no Passenger  disappears into thin air.

The  information about the 33 year –old  Nigerian female drug courier flying  the Ethiopian airline  may have leaked out to the NDLEA personnel through an oversea  informant  that all attentions were focused on fishing her out as the Ethiopian airline  flight arrived the MMIA and all the   Passengers directed  to the  E-arrival wing  for proper profiling.

She was said to have been identified  and  quickly whisked away  to the NDLEA office at the airport amidst tight security.  It was gathered that it was  during the searching by the female NDLEA ,officials  on her travel  bags  that ‘’the whitish  powdery  substances Concealed  inside  16 pieces  of duvet were  ound, an indication that she has been a die-had courier of rug in the country for a syndicate.   The suspected drug , was said to have be subjected to laboatory test to make assurance doubly sure that it was actually Cocain subastances that that were in the Passenger’s travel  bags.

The Suspect  who is a Nigerian hair stylist based in Brazil  was said to have told  the NDLEA officials who had interrogated her over the Concain discovery in her two travel bags that she had agreed ‘’ to smuggle the hard dug into the country  for one Ikechukwu Eze for the sum of  N2 million’’. She was said to have volunteered information  that she was instructed  to hand over the drug  to the receiver, one   Emmanuel Iyke Aniebonam, no relation of Bonniface Aniebonnam, founder of National Association of Government Approved Freight Forwarders, NAGAFF.

 The said Iyke, who  was said to be very happy  that  the Ethiopian airline he was expecting had successfully arrived he country. He  was optimistic, of taking delivery of the drug  from Jennifer, who  has been detailed by Eze, the sender to hand it  over to him  at the airport. Unknown to him, the NDLEA , Operatives  were after  him as he has been named as the receiver in Nigeria. Unknown to him the deal had leaked  and the NDLEA officials were looking out for him at the National Cargo Handling Company , NAHCO,  shed, where he was waiting   to take delivery of the 26.840 Kg of Cocain. He was cited at NAHCO and arrested, making two persons that had been arrested w in connection with the 26.840 Kg drug imports into the country from Brazil.

Iyke was said to have confessed  during interrogation   by the NDLEA officials that he was actually instructed by the sender, Eze, to take delivery of the cocain .  He had roped in  the third person,one Onwurah Kelvin, in the deal . He had sent  him to be at the  MMIA  to collect the hard drug from  Iyke  and join him   at Ibis Royal Hotel, a  few miles away from the MMIA.   He fell  into the waiting hands of the NDLEA officials at the airport. Preliminary Investigation shows that he has confirmed that he  was instructed by Eze to receive the Consignment in Nigeria.

iNTERCEPTED 26.840 Kg , Cocain At MMIA

 The detained Jennifer’s traveller’s bags were said to   have been brought out and opened  in the presence of the three arrested suspects, Jennifer, Iyke and Kelvin and the whitish powdery substance were discovered  neatly Concealed  and sewn  in five Cildren  duvets. As  at press time, the three drug suspects, who are a Eze’s agents in Nigeria, were still in detention, awaiting to be dragged to Court. 

Recall that on ` Monday, January 25, 2021,  a red luggage which  was declared  to the NDLEA Operatives at the MMIA as, a left-over  a the t E – wing arrival hall of the airport  , after the inward  Clearance  of Passengers on an Ethiopian airline  that had landed at the  MMIA, alleged to have arrived from Sao Pualo, Brazil, was found to  cotain  cocain , allegedly belonging to  Eze . He may have used different channels to smuggle the hard drug into the country but luck  ran out of him this time around him.

NDLEA Operatives At MMIA

Going by  the records and trends of arrests of drug barons all over the world including Nigeria in the recent time,  the Brazilian town of Sao-Pulo, has been classified as a high risk drug destination. It is not surprising  why Passengers flying from the town into any part of the world including  Nigeria , via, the Ethiopian airline or any other airline  is regarded as a drug  suspect, until properly  profiled at the airport and let off the hook.

Marwa and his Commanders have every reason to run after the  drug syndicate who are giving Nigerian bad name in the Comity of nations as a  high risk drug country. More so, there had been  news making the rounds  that there are over 15 million drug users in the country. The NDLEA  records in 2018 alone, shows that   about  14.3 million Nigerians  between  the ages  of 15 and 64  were found to be drug users. This may have informed why  Marwa has vowed to seek the National Assembly approval  to conduct  drug tests  on tertiary  institutions’ students’, particular, the new students, security agencies fresh recruits   and political appointees.

Given an insider information on how to go about the drug tests to his field Commanders at a recent meeting in Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory, FCT,  he had said that  the agency  would soon  propose to the National Assembly  the necessity  for the drug tests for all tertiary institutions new students.

The NDLEA Chairman had said  that  the ‘’exponential  growth  of the nefarious drug activities in the country  can be ‘’directly linked  to the  upsurge  in insurgency, in the north east states of Adamawa, Borno, Ybe, and  Banditry in the north west states of  Zamfara and Katsina, Buhari home state,  kidnapping in different parts of the country,  cultism in tertiary institutions,  political thugggery,  gangsterism, rape,  and other mal adaptation bedeviling  the society’’.

 The Leadership of the National Association of Nigerian tudents, NANS, appears to have thrown their weight about the NDLEA  planned proposal to the National Assembly  for students ‘’to udergo  drug integrity  test  before admission  into the tertiary Institutions, particular, the Universities.

 That much was confirmed by Jonah Achema, a Principal Staff officer and the agency Public Relations officer.  Achema , who had issued a Statement , had quoted  Sunday Asefon, NANS President as making the declaration during a Solidarity visit to the NDLEA  Chairman in his Abuja office. This should serve as a good news to Nigerians as the NANS  officials knows where the shoe pinches and how to contain the problem.

An appreciative Marwa had thanked the NANS officials for buying  into the agency  drug testing   among students, describing it as ‘’encouraging’’. Appealing to the NANs Leadership   to strengthen  theDrug-Free Clubs in the Universities, he disclosed that it is the only way  ‘’ to determine  the students early  enough  and decide   the formof prevention  to deploy ‘’.

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