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Thursday, May 23, 2024

NDLEA establishes special squads to tackle drug consumption and sales in Abuja

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The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) says it has inaugurated special squads to curb open sales and consumption of illicit drugs in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja.

Kabiru Tsakuba, Commander of Narcotics (CN), NDLEA, FCT Command, said this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Monday in Abuja.

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Mr Tsakuwa said that the approach would be through dislodgement of notorious drug joints, arrest of drug dealers, seizure of drugs and prosecution of offenders.

He said that FCT was unique because it had an international airport where some flights come directly from drug source countries and others from East African countries where hard drugs, such as cocaine and heroin, could be accessed.

According to him, some may find their way into the town, in spite of the interdiction efforts of the NDLEA officers at the airport.

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“The FCT, by its nature, has high income localities interspersed with low income slums where drug peddlers can take advantage to deal in drugs.

“There are individuals that can afford to buy any kind of drugs of their desire or choice without having to bother in any way.

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“These, among many reasons, therefore, create veritable opportunities for drug peddlers, like in other cities of the world, to trade in these criminal substances.

“Having said this, it is important to note that the command has been trying its best to ensure a drug-free environment in the FCT,” Mr Tsakuwa said.

He also pointed out that the NDLEA has been engaged in combating the open sales of illicit drugs through two major approaches of “Drug Supply Reduction” and “Drug Demand Reduction”.

The narcotics commander said that NDLEA created these special squads to deal with actionable intelligence, as it comes in, with a view to curbing illicit drug activities through dislodgement of notorious drug joints, arrest of dealers, seizure of drugs and prosecution of offenders.

Mr Tsakuwa disclosed that the agency had also leveraged on the existing relationship with the community to assist it with intelligence on areas where drug activities were high for effective control.

He added that the agency had intensified sensitisation in schools, churches, mosques and other organisations.

He said this was with a view to educating and sensitising the public on consequences associated with drug abuse and trafficking of drugs.

“There is an existing collaboration with park management and National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW) in both information sharing and sensitisation.

“We have also strengthened our interdiction efforts at the entry points via well fashioned out effective patrol strategy.

“This is along the major entry points such as Abaji-Lokoja Road, Gwagwalada-Kwali Road, Bwari-Jere Road, Mararaba/Nyanya Road, among others, in order to check the influx of drugs that may want to find its way into the FCT,“ he said.

(NAN)

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