Drug Abuse: NDLEA arrests 454 suspects in Adamawa

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The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLE), Adamawa Command, says it has arrested no fewer than 454 suspected illicit drug traffickers/peddlers from June 2023 till date.

State Commander of NDLEA, Mr Samson Agboalu, disclosed this on Friday at a news conference to begin the commemoration of the 2024 International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking in the state.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the World Drug Day with the theme: “The Evidence is Clear: Invest in Prevention” is celebrated annually on June 26 globally.

Agboalu said that the arrest figure made by the agency reflected a 9.38 per cent decrease from the 501 arrests made in the previous year.

National growth LS

He noted that the drug seizures significantly increased, with a total of 4,732.128 kilo grammes of hard drugs confiscated.

”This is a 75 per cent increase from the 1,164.750 kg seized between June 2022 and June 2023.

“These seizures include a range of substances such as Cannabis Sativa, Methamphetamine (ice), Cocaine, Tramadol, Exol-5, Diazepam tablets, Codeine-based syrup, Rohypnol tablets, and Pentazocine injections.

“Our Drug Demand Reduction (DDR) efforts have also been fruitful, with 107 residential clients treated, counseled, and rehabilitated, and 222 trafficking clients receiving brief intervention counseling,” he said.

Speaking on prosecution efforts and forfeitures from June 2023 till date, he said 148 individuals were convicted, with notable increase from 115 convictions recorded between June 2022 and June 2023.

“The highest sentences handed down were between10 and five years imprisonment, with the least six months.

“Monetary forfeiture recorded an increase, with the sum of N851,153 forfeited to the Federal Government and deposited into the Treasury Single Account (TSA), compared to N729,480 in the previous year.”

The NDLEA commander called for the adoption of preventive measures as a strategic approach in addressing drug abuse in the state.

He said that it was imperative to invest in prevention through increased public education, collaboration with communities by ensuring youths have access to accurate information to discourage drug use.

“As we reflect on the theme, it is clear that investing in prevention is a strategic approach that promises long-term benefits and only effective way to address the root causes of drug abuse.

“Evidence has shown that prevention programmes can significantly reduce the initiation of drug use, thereby reducing the burden on law enforcement and the healthcare system.

“By focusing on education, awareness, and early intervention, we can protect our communities, particularly the youth, from the devastating effects of drug abuse,” he said.

Agboalu also emphasised the need for collaborative effort in the fight against the menace, in order to create a future where children could grow up in a safe, healthy, and drug-free communities.

NAN reports that the command has organised one-week activities in line with the commemoration of the  World Drug Day to raise awareness and promote preventive measures (NAN)

By Talatu Maiwada

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