Over four tons of illicit and controlled drugs including consignments of nitrous oxide popularly known as ‘laughing gas’, skunk, codeine syrup, methamphetamine and tramadol have been intercepted by operatives of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), during interdiction operations in Lagos, Kogi, FCT, Jigawa, Kaduna, Sokoto and Edo states.
It was gathered that ver 1,194 cylinders of ‘laughing gas’ with a total weight of 2,547.2kgs loaded in two Toyota Sienna buses were intercepted on Friday by the NDLEA operatives along Okene-Lokoja-Abuja Expressway. Laughing gas is one the latest sources of drug abuse common among youths.
NDLEA spokesman Femi Babafemi, said on Sunday in a statement that two suspects: Onyebuchi Ikpozu and Kenneth Igwe who were taking the consignments to the FCT for distribution were arrested and taken into custody.
According to him, while one of the Toyota Sienna buses marked KTU 582 HV was conveying 99 cartons containing 594 cylinders weighing 1,267.200kgs, the second bus with the number plate FKJ 329 YA was conveying 100 cartons of the substance with 600 cylinders weighing 1,280kgs.
“A 48-year-old woman, Mrs. Ugo Eluba was also arrested in Abuja in a follow-up operation after 2,400 ampules of pentazocine injection and 100,000 tablets of Exol-5 intercepted in Kogi State were traced to her,” Babafemi said.
In another development in the FCT, operatives intercepted 977 kilograms of skunk on Wednesday, September 20 in a trailer marked LSR 343 XW, bearing cartons of maggi.
The skunk consignment was loaded into a truck at Ipele junction in Ondo State. While 959kgs of the substance were meant for distribution in Sokoto State, the rest was to be dropped off at Gwagwalada in Abuja.
Two suspects: Auwal Mohammed and Abdullahi Abubakar have been arrested in connection with the seizure, while two other suspects: Mutari Abdulazeez, 31, and Ayuba Madaki, 28, were also arrested on Saturday September 23, at Zuba area of the FCT with different quantities of methamphetamine, cannabis and 13, 930 pills of tramadol.
In the same vein, Shuaibu Yusif, 27, and Abubakar Hussaini, 20, were on Saturday 23rd September nabbed with 89.1kgs of skunk along Kano-Hadejia road, Jigawa State during a stop-and-search patrol by the NDLEA operatives.
Also, no fewer than 6,000 ampules of pentazocine injection were recovered from a suspect, Usman Musa Sidi, 35, on Monday September 18, along Abuja-Forest road, in Kaduna State while on his way to Bauchi State.
A follow-up operation in Bauchi led to the arrest of the actual owner of the consignment, Dominic Chukwuma, 35, on Tuesday September 19, with at least 2.58kgs of Diazepam and 36.55kgs of pentazocine injection recovered from his home.
Two other suspects: Inuwa Nuhu and Isiyaku Dahiru Sani were also arrested same Tuesday in connection with the seizure of 49 blocks of cannabis sativa concealed in a black sack weighing 26kgs in a commercial vehicle coming from Ogere, Ogun State to Kano State.
While a total of 183kgs of Ghana Loud, a strain of cannabis, were recovered from body compartments of a J5 bus intercepted in Lagos on Wednesday 20th September, operatives in Sokoto State, on Tuesday 19th September arrested one Charles Okeke, 44, with 473 bottles of codeine syrup at Unguwar Kosai area of Sokoto.
In Edo State, 365 blocks of compressed cannabis sativa weighing 258kgs were recovered from a Toyota Camry car marked KTU 886 EZ at Igarra, Akoko Edo LGA.
In the same vein, in a massive operation between Monday 11 and Wednesday 13 September, NDLEA operatives stormed thick forests in Ijesha Isu-Ekiti, Ikole Local Government Area of Ekiti State, where they destroyed 40 tons (40,000kgs) of cannabis plants covering 16 hectares of farmland.