Wednesday, May 18, 2011

More single mothers involved in drug trafficking

The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) has expressed concern over the rising number of cases of single mothers involved in drug trafficking.

This follows the arrest of a single mother of two, 38 year old Risikat Olanrewaju Abiola, a trader of Indian clothes at the Lagoon market, Nnamdi Azikiwe Road, Lagos Island.

The drug agency interecepted 2.300kg of high grade heroin worth about N25million from Miss Abiola at at the Murtala Mohammed International Airport (MMIA) Lagos at the weekend during the inward screening of Emirate passengers from Mumbai, India. Six female hand bags belonging to Abiola were found to contain parcels of brown, powdery substances that tested positive for heroin.
Chairman/Chief Executive of the NDLEA, Ahmadu Giade said that the seizure will send a warning signal to drug trafficking syndicates that Nigeria is prepared to halt their sinister activities. According to the NDLEA Chairman, Mr. Giade added that the Agency is seeking a collaborative investigation since the drug originated from Mumbai.

"We are going to resist all attempts by drug barons to import narcotics into the country. The rising profile of our great country is important to us and we are prepared to resist any attempt to smear our reputation. This will serve as a warning to drug barons that they have an uphill task smuggling drugs into the country."

The NDLEA boss also stated that Nigeria and India would soon have a special arrangement for the joint investigation of the drug trafficking activities.

Speaking with reporters about the arrest of Abiola, the NDLEA Airport Commander, Alhaji Hamza Umar, said, "We successfully apprehended the owner of the luggage where the drug was found. The seizure was made during routine physical examination of goods. Investigation has commenced and the suspect is helping with useful information."

In her own statement, Abiola said that she was assisting another trader, the owner of the bags to bring them into the country.

"I was only helping my fellow trader and did not know that the bags contained drugs. I used to buy my wares from Togo and Benin Republic.

"During my first trip to India in February 2011, I met this Nigerian woman who also imports goods from Indian. When I got to Bombay (Mumbai) during my recent trip, she requested me to assist her by bringing some of her goods. She opened the bags for me to see because they are new bags. I never knew that heroin was industrially packaged in six of the bags. It is obvious that a fellow woman had played on my intelligence."

About two weeks ago, the airport command of the NDLEA had arrested another single mother, Aina Fausat Olanrewaju, a dealer in jewellery, shoes and clothes. Olaranwanju had allegedly trafficked cocaine worth N30million from Brazil. She had successfully concealed the hard drugs inside six candle sticks before she was nabbed. She is currently awaiting trial.

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