The NDLEA said in a statement that the cannabis operation was busted on January 28, 2023, following a tip-off from a concerned citizen. The agency deployed its operatives to the Ojuelegba area in Lagos, where they intercepted two trucks and a J5 bus loaded with the illicit substance.
The statement said the cannabis was concealed in sacks and cartons, and was destined for customers in Europe and Asia. The statement also said the cannabis was linked to a wanted drug baron, Suleiman Jimoh, also known as Olowo Idi Ogede or Temo, who operates from Akala, Mushin.
The agency said it arrested one driver, Nasiru Ojomu, 66, who works for Temo, while two other drivers escaped by jumping off their moving vehicles. The agency said it recovered a large amount of cash, equipment, and chemicals from the scene.
The Implications of the Cannabis Seizure
The NDLEA said the cannabis seizure was a significant achievement in its fight against drug trafficking and abuse in Nigeria. The agency said the cannabis had an estimated street value of N2.9 billion (about $7 million), and that its interception had prevented a huge amount of harm to the society.
The agency also said the cannabis seizure had exposed the extent of the involvement of Ghanaian drug syndicates in the Nigerian drug market. The agency said it was working with its counterparts in Ghana to track down the source and suppliers of the cannabis.
The agency also said the cannabis seizure had demonstrated its commitment and capacity to combat drug trafficking and abuse in Nigeria, despite the challenges and limitations it faces. The agency said it was determined to rid the country of the menace of drugs and to bring the perpetrators to justice.
The Reaction of the NDLEA Chairman
The Chairman/Chief Executive Officer of the NDLEA, Brig. Gen. Mohamed Buba Marwa (Retd), commended the efforts of the operatives and the cooperation of the public in the successful operation. He said the cannabis seizure was a clear indication of the agency’s resolve to make Nigeria a drug-free nation.
He also urged the public to continue to support the agency by providing useful information and reporting any suspicious activity to the agency. He said the agency was ready to act on any intelligence and to protect the identity of the informants.
He also appealed for more information on the whereabouts of Temo, the wanted drug baron, who he said was behind several shipments of cannabis and other drugs in the past. He said anyone with information should contact the agency through its toll-free line, 0800 CALL NDLEA (0800 2255 63532), or through its website, www.ndlea.gov.ng.
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