Defence/Security

Nigeria arrests 8,634 drug traffickers in 8 months – Marwa

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Nigeria arrests 8,634 drug traffickers in 8 months – Marwa

By Cecilia Ologunagba

Nigeria arrested as many as 8,634 suspected drug traffickers from January to August 2021, President / CEO of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), Brig.-Gen. Buba Marwa (rtd), revealed.

Marwa told the United Nations General Assembly’s Committee on Human Rights, Humanitarian Affairs and Social Affairs in New York on Tuesday that the NDLEA had also seized more than 100 billion naira of drugs and of money during the period.

“Our constant targeting of drug trafficking organizations has resulted in the arrest of 8,634 suspected drug traffickers and the seizure of over 100 billion naira in cash and drugs,” he said.

“The perpetrators will go through the criminal justice system with their basic human rights strictly respected.

“Against the background of the strong link between illicit drug use and insecurity, it should be noted that Nigeria made its first seizure of 74.119 kg of Captagon brand amphetamines, presumably intended to fuel the insurgency and other crimes and violent crimes that Nigeria is currently grappling with.

“Nigeria is pleased to announce that the EU-funded and UNODC-sponsored Cannabis Cultivation Survey is expected to highlight the full extent of cannabis cultivation in Nigeria and facilitate the targeting of measures to contain this perennial threat, ”said Marwa.

The UN correspondent of the Nigeria News Agency reports that the NDLEA boss thanked international partners for their support in Nigeria’s fight against drug abuse and trafficking.

Marwa said that the unexpected emergence of the COVID -19 pandemic, without question, has further accentuated the scourge of drug trafficking and related crimes around the world.

“It should be mentioned here that one of the challenges of the pandemic is the proliferation of the online sale of drug cookies and the use of courier services to transport illicit drugs.

“However, we were able to intercept, trace and dismantle most of the drug cells involved.

“This constitutes a clear call to all nations of the world to unite in the face of adversity by taking concerted and well-coordinated action at the national, regional and international levels to address and counter the global drug problems, through the evolving drug control policies, effective crime prevention mechanisms and a complete overhaul of the criminal justice system.

“Nigeria will not hesitate to adopt aggressive strategies to counter new approaches adopted by organized criminals in order to make drug trafficking unattractive.

“This will ensure the confiscation of assets derived from crime, a proven and powerful deterrent against the proliferation of drug-related crimes and offenses,” he said.

Additionally, Marwa told the UN committee that the Nigerian government has produced the Enhanced Fourth Edition of the Drug Control Master Plan 2021-2025 with technical support from the EU-funded UNODC.

He said the document comprehensively addressed four thematic pillars of supply reduction, demand reduction, access to controlled medicines for medical purposes, and coordination and governance.

“Nigeria is committed to periodically monitor and evaluate the master plan with relevant stakeholders for optimal results,” said the Nigerian boss of the fight against drugs.

According to him, the Nigerian government has shown political will by demonstrating a high commitment to protecting public health and safety with the launch of the War Against Drug Abuse (WADA) campaign.

“This campaign is a call to civil action for all Nigerians to fully embrace and own the fight against the threat of illicit drugs.

“Even more, Nigeria’s drug control efforts have received tremendous momentum with unprecedented stakeholder involvement.

“We have engaged civil society groups, non-governmental organizations, universities and governments at all levels, public information is also enhanced with remarkable media visibility against illicit drugs and related crimes,” he said. he declared.

The NDLEA chief also told the committee that appropriate strategies have been adopted to address the issue of stigmatization of people who use drugs in the country.

He said the strategies adopted to tackle stigma included meeting the needs of communities and vulnerable groups such as women, girls, children (out of school and homeless), internally displaced people , among others.

He said Nigeria recognizes drug use disorders as a public health issue and that the lockdown of the COVID-19 pandemic has necessitated the establishment of the UNODC-EU sponsored Drug Help Net, a network of professionals who provided telephone assistance to people who use drugs and their families during confinement.

NDLEA, tasked with eliminating the cultivation, processing, manufacture, sale, export and trafficking of hard drugs, is present at international airports, seaports and border crossings in the country and is trying to eradicate cannabis by destroying plantations.

reports that the agency is also targeting leaders of narcotics and money laundering organizations.

Source: NAN

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