By Stephen Adeleye.
The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), Kogi Command, on Monday said it made a total seizure of 10, 978.399 kg of illicit drugs between Jan. 1 and Dec. 31, 2020.
The NDLEA Commander in Kogi, Mr Alfred Adewumi, disclosed this at a press conference at the command’s headquarters in Lokoja.
Adewumi also said that the command discovered a cumulative of 26 hectares of cultivated cannabis sativa plantation in the state estimated to weigh 302, 390. 400kg.
He said that the street value of the cultivated plantation was over N3 billion and this confirmed the status of Kogi state as a major cannabis sativa cultivating state like Ondo and Edo states.
Adewumi said that the total weight of illicit drugs recovered within the period from Jan. 1 to Dec. 31, 2020, was therefore 313,368.759kg.
The commander noted that even though the operations and activities of NDLEA had been very challenging especially within the period under review due to COVID-19 pandemic, the agency had made some tremendous achievements.
“Having accepted these challenging assignments with unshaken faith and dedication, we take pride in showcasing our modest achievements between January 1st 2020 and December 31st 2020.
“Our intelligence gathering activities, the follow-up raid operations and interceptions made in the course of patrols led to the seizure of illicit drugs that weighed 10, 978.399 kg.
“A breakdown into different drug types by weight shows that Cannabis Sativa had a total weight of 10,072.916kg, Cocaine 0.553kg, Diazepam 24.875kg, Rohypnol 19.157kg, Tramadol 3.758kg, Exol-5 167.16kg, Cough Syrup with Codeine 689.9kg and Swinol 0.040kg.
“The concerted effort of officers and men of this command led to dispelling the wrongly held impression that Kogi State is a drug transit point,” Adewumi said.
He further said that the operations had also led to the arrest of a total of 174 suspects comprised of 162 males and 12 females.
He added that the command was able to secure 15 convictions while 17 other cases were still pending in court.
“Where it was possible to trace and connect any of their assets to drugs; these have been seized and some vehicles have actually being forfeited to the FGN while some others are still under interim forfeiture”, the commander said.
He added that the command also carried out short intervention counselling for 126 persons and successfully rehabilitated three others who were drug dependent or who abuses drugs.
Adewumi said that the NDLEA remained at war with the drug dealers who are callous merchants of death profiteering from the decimation of society, ruination of families and the truncating of potentials.
He commended the military and all other security agencies for their collaborative efforts with NDLEA in achieving its great feats, and applauded the media for their immense partnership with the agency.
He thanked Governor Yahaya Bello for his support and for creating the conducive environment for NDLEA in its bid to rid the state of illicit drugs.