The Borno State Command of National Drugs Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) has seized 16,904.31 kilogrammes of illicit drugs, with arrests of 544 suspects.
While announcing the arrests at the weekend in Maiduguri, NDLEA’s State Commandant, Joseph Icha, said the successes were recorded in 2020.
“Out of 544 arrested suspects, 537 are males, while seven are females,” he said.
He added that 44 seizures were made, while other suspects fled the scene of operations in Maiduguri Metropolitan Council (MMC) and Jere Local Government Area of Borno State.
He explained that the seized drugs comprise cannabis sativa, various psychotropic substances, cocaine and heroin.
He said in August last year, the agency also destroyed 19,904.31kgs of illicit drugs along Maiduguri/Dikwa Road.
“Nine cars and a mini bus were also seized in the operation from the suspected drug peddlers,” he said, adding that the command also secured three interim forfeitures of three vehicles of arrested suspects.
He said the agency is processing an interim forfeiture of three-bedroom flats and two boys’ quarters that were used to stockpile over 10,500kgs of marijuana.
He said what is more worrisome is the alarming rate of drug abuse in some Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) camps.
Icha noted that since the agency doesn’t conduct raids in the camps, surveillance is being conducted in IDP camps in collaboration with security agencies.
Lamenting poor working facilities, he said: “Despite the successes recorded, the Command is facing some challenges, such as poor infrastructure and logistics and lack of patrol vehicles.
He noted that most of the agency’s patrol vehicles in liberated communities were torched by Boko Haram terrorists.