In Lagos, the NDLEA finds 14.4 million tramadol pills, while 86 wraps of heroin are excreted by a trafficker.
The National Drug Enforcement Agency, NDLEA, says its operatives have recovered no less than 14,481,519 pills of Tramadol and bottles of codeine syrup worth over N13 billion in street value in three significant busts of drug cartels operating in Amuwo Odofin, Idumota, and the SAHCO shed of the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Ikeja, Lagos.
NDLEA stated that the three intelligence-led operations began with the raid of House 8/10 Hon. Wahuha Avenue, Divine Estate, Ago Palace area of Amuwo Odofin on Sunday, October 29th, where 490,000 pills of tramadol and 81,519 bottles of codeine syrup measuring 4,510,000 ml were recovered.
This was disclosed in a statement issued on Sunday by Femi Babafemi, the NDLEA’s Director of Media and Advocacy.
Babafemi said the anti-narcotic agency, in a similar operation on Tuesday, October 31st, swooped on a secret warehouse operated by a billionaire Idumota trader, Nwaoha Anayo, located at Onitire, Aguda area of Surulere, where 12,700,000 pills of tramadol were recovered.
According to the statement, at least six members of a syndicate using their official cover to facilitate the smuggling of illicit drugs through the Skyway Aviation Handling Company (SAHCO) warehouse at the Lagos airport into the country have also been arrested, and 1,210,000 pills of tramadol were seized from them in a painstaking operation that lasted for weeks.
The spokesman said the six suspects already in NDLEA custody include Oladele Sanya-Olu, Lawal Itunu Temitope, Sanamo Alla Daniel, Udeh Felix Monday, Musa Mutalib, and Unege Evans Icibor, while three other suspects, Sarki Mubarak Salami, Abdullahi Aliyu (aka Aboki), and Monday Anwal, are now on the run and wanted by NDLEA.
Meanwhile, NDLEA said its operatives intercepted yet another businessman, 50-year-old Nwokolo Ifeanyi Anthony, at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, NAIA, Abuja, during the outward clearance of Air France flight AF 878 to Amsterdam, Netherlands, via Paris, France, at the boarding gate and were body-scanned, with the result turning out to be positive for illicit drug ingestion.
According to Babafemi, the suspect, who traveled from Lagos to board the flight, was subsequently kept under observation for some days, during which he excreted a total of 86 pellets of heroin weighing 1.330 kilograms.
Announcing further interceptions and seizures made by the agency, Babafemi said: “Similarly, NDLEA operatives of the Directorate of Operations and General Investigation, DOGI, attached to courier firms on Monday, October 30th, intercepted 22 parcels of cocaine concealed in the walls of a carton containing sewn local fabrics popularly called Aso Oke, heading to Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.
“Meanwhile, NDLEA operatives have arrested three blind men operating an illicit drug ring between Lagos and Kano, while another blind member of the syndicate is still at large. The lid was blown off the group following the arrest of a blind suspect, Adamu Hassan, 40, along the Gwagwalada expressway in Abuja with 12 kg of skunk on his way from Lagos to Kano on Saturday, October 28th. Investigations, however, established that he was totally oblivious to the contents of the bag handed to him to deliver in Kano.
“Follow-up operations then led to the arrest of the arrowhead of the syndicate, Bello Abubakar, 45, who is also blind. In his statement, Bello, who is married with five children, said he has been living in Lagos for 30 years but started the illicit drug business five years ago.
“Another suspect, Muktar Abubakar, 59, who is equally blind, has been living in Lagos for 40 years and is married to three wives with 14 children. Both Muktar Abubakar and Bello Abubakar are joint owners of the business, while the third suspect, Akilu Amadu, 25, also blind, equally contributes money to the criminal trade and is indeed the one who delivered the consignment to Adamu at the motor park in Lagos to deliver in Kano. Another blind suspect who is the expected receiver of the consignment in Kano, Mallam Aminu, is currently at large.
“While operatives in Osun stormed the Obada sawmill forest in Owena-Ijesa, Oriade LGA, where they arrested a suspect, Monday Sylvester, 37, on a 6.01-hectare cannabis farm that was destroyed and 489.8 kg of already processed plant recovered, their colleagues in Edo raided a trans-loading point inside Avbiosi forest, Owan West LGA, where 603 kilograms of the illicit substance were seized.
“Also, NDLEA officers in Ogun state on Friday, 3rd November, recovered a Toyota Sienna bus from a ditch at Ajebo Area, along the Lagos-Ibadan expressway. A search of the vehicle led to the seizure of 460 kg of the same substance, while a total of 116.5 kg of cannabis sativa belonging to a suspect at large were seized in Olagunju, Mushin area of Lagos.
Reacting to the development, the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of NDLEA, Brig. Gen. Mohamed Buba Marwa (Retd), commended the officers and men of the NAIA, MMIA, Lagos, Osun, Edo, and FCT Commands, as well as those of DOGI, for the arrests and seizures of the past week.
Marwa charged them and their compatriots across the country to remain focused as the agency expands its operations against drug cartels.