*As Operatives Seize 40 Parcels of Cocaine at MMIA; Consignments of Heroin, Codeine, Tramadol at Apapa port, Kaduna, Yobe, Anambra
OPERATIVES of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency, NDLEA, on Monday, March 7, 2022, nabbed the General Overseer of Christ Living Hope Church, Rev. Ugochukwu Emmanuel Ekwem at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, MMIA, Ikeja Lagos.
Youthful Rev. Ekwem, was arrested with 54 sticks of drugs wrapped around his body during the outward clearance of passengers on Ethiopian Airlines flight to Nairobi via Addis Ababa. He was scheduled for a three-week crusade in the capital of the East African nation.
Rev. Ekwem, has his church domiciled in Isuaniocha, Mgbakwu road, Awka, Awka North council area, Anambra state, with two other branches in Lagos and Abuja,
Spokesperson for the NDLEA, Femi Babafemi, explained that tests conducted on the substance found on the preacher proved positive to cannabis. He added that upon interrogation, the pastor admitted to packing the drugs on his body with a view to using them over his three-week stay in Nairobi
“When the 54 sticks found on the General Overseer were tested, they proved positive to cannabis.
“The clergyman confessed during the preliminary interview that he packed that quantity of illicit substance on his body to use during his three weeks crusade in Kenya”.
Babafemi also disclosed that the agency arrested another passenger, Nnakeanyi Chukwuka King, at the airport. King, who flew Ethiopia Airlines flight from Sao Paulo, Brazil via Addis Ababa, was nabbed with 40 parcels of cocaine just as another suspect, Edo Blessing, booked on an Ethiopian Airlines flight to Italy, was intercepted at the Departure Hall of the airport with 2, 090 tablets of Tramadol 225mg and Flunitrazepam.
“On the same day, another passenger, Nnakeanyi Chukwuka King, who arrived at the airport on Ethiopian Airlines flight from Sao Paulo, Brazil via Addis Ababa was intercepted during the inward clearance of passengers at the E-Arrival Hall of the MMIA.
“During a search of his luggage, 40 parcels of Cocaine concealed inside bottles of body cream with a gross weight of 9.70kg were recovered from the suspect.
“Three days later, Wednesday, March, 9, another passenger on Ethiopian Airlines flight to Italy, Mr. Edo Blessing was intercepted at the Departure Hall of the airport with 2, 090 tablets of Tramadol 225mg and Flunitrazepam.
“The suspect who hails from Edo state but lives in Italy claimed ownership of the recovered psychotropic substances.
“Also on the same day, operatives arrested a freight agent, Rafiu Abbas at the NAHCO Export Shed of the airport when he presented a cargo containing 19.15kg cannabis going to London.
“The illicit substance was concealed inside plastic containers labelled as “African Dishes” and packed in a bag.
“In a related development, a 63-year-old Vincent Obimma was on Friday, March 11, arrested with 350grams of cocaine and 150grams of heroin by NDLEA operatives at a park in the Apapa seaport corridor in Lagos.
“The drugs were hidden in industrial torch packets heading to Kano, Kano state.
A drug dealer in Kaduna state, James Okenwa has been arrested in a follow-up operation at Central Market, Kaduna.
Okenwa admitted ownership of 1,807 bottles of cough syrup with codeine that were earlier recovered from two suspects at the toll gate. Another 152 bottles of the same drug were recovered from his vehicle the point of his arrest. He has accepted ownership of all the 1,959 bottles of codeine syrup.
In Yobe state, two fake security agents: Akalonu Justin and Azimbi Festus who were coming from Onitsha and heading to Maiduguri, Borno state have were arrested with 25 blocks of Cannabis Sativa weighing 12 .5kg and 1, 598 bottles of Codeine Syrup weighing 159.8 Liters, while 85kg of cannabis was also recovered from the warehouse of a notorious drug dealer in Pawari area of Damaturu, the state capital on Thursday 10th March.
In Anambra state, a total of 38,605 tablets of assorted opioids were recovered from a 29-year-old drug dealer, Awoke Friday at Nkwelle junction, Onitsha on Friday 11th March with the support of men of the Nigeria Police.