Nigeria: NDLEA intercepts 2.3 million opioid tablets heading north

The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) intercepted more than 2.3 million tablets of illicit pharmaceutical opioids and other psychoactive substances intended for distribution in seven northern states.

The Director, Media and Advocacy, NDLEA, Mr. Femi Babafemi, said so in a statement on Sunday in Abuja.

Bababfemi named the states Borno, Kano, Kaduna, Sokoto, Zamfara, Gombe and Nasarawa.

He added that the agency had conducted a series of interdiction operations over the past week.

Babafemi said a total of 2,325,553.00 tablets and capsules of Tramadol, Pregabalin, Hypnox, Diazepam and Exol-5 were seized in all.

This, he said, included 7,353 bottles of a new psychoactive substance locally called “Akuskura” destined for the seven states which were seized in Kaduna, Kogi, Sokoto and the FCT.

According to him, in Kaduna, a drug trafficker, Umar Sanusi, was arrested on August 12 during a follow-up operation in Kano.

“He was driven back to Kaduna where his consignment of 50 cartons of pregabalin 300mg, containing 750,000 capsules, weighing 375kg seized earlier along the Abuja-Kaduna highway was counted and weighed in his presence.

“On the same day, officers also intercepted along the Abuja-Kaduna expressway 7,068 bottles of a new hazardous substance called ‘Akuskura’ destined for Kaduna, Zamfara, Gombe, Kano and Borno.

“Recipients in Kaduna and Zamfara had been arrested during follow-up operations,” he said.

Babafemi said on August 13, 285 bottles of “NPS” were collected from a dealer, Abubakar Ahmad, in Kaduna state.

He indicated that no less than 696,000 tablets of Tramadol and Exol-5, among others, were also seized.

They were loaded onto a truck in Onitsha, Anambra State and heading for Maiduguri, Borno State, to be seized along the Okene-Abuja highway on Friday.

He said NDLEA officers also recovered 300,000 diazepam tablets from a suspect, 30-year-old Faruku Bello, in Sokoto state on Wednesday.

“Anti-narcotics officers from the Abuja agency, FCT, also intercepted a bus loaded with 323,200 tablets of Tramadol 225mg and others at the weekend in Onitsha, Anambra State, in leadership of Nasarawa State.

“The driver of the vehicle, Osita Nwobodo, 45, who made unsuccessful attempts to compromise officers is now in custody,” he said.

Babafemi quoted the President, NDLEA, Retired, Brig. General Buba Marwa commended the officers and men of Kaduna, Kogi, Sokoto and FCT commands for the arrests and seizures.

Marwa urged them and their compatriots across the country to step up their drug supply and demand reduction efforts.

Vanguard News Nigeria

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