Interpol, Nigeria, Niger republic agencies sieze 881.100kg illicit drugs

By Ado Hassan, Sokoto
‎Worth 881.100kgs of illicit drugs had been seized in Sokoto state and the Nigeria-Niger republic border, according to NDLEA Chairman, Col. Mustapha Abdallah retired.

He said six suspects, including a 12- year old boy, were arrested during the operation with the cooperation of the Interpol team led by ‎Mr. Hakidu Illo.
Disclosing the break-through in Sokoto  Friday at the closing ceremony of a five-day Joint Training and Operations Exercise, between Nigeria and Niger, Abdallah said the seizures were made sequel to the joint operation code-named, ” Operation Ninibo, Nigeria-Niger border.”’

The agency’s Boss also gave the breakdown of the seizures as: Diazepam 67.10kgs, Tramadol 22.60kgs, cough syrup with codeine 794kgs and 30kgs of cannabis.

‎However, the programme was organized by the ECOWAS, in conjunction with Interpol, in Sokoto.‎

In the same vein, Abdallah added:” There is robust existing Protocol between and Niger republic, which is the background of these efforts to rid the region of illicit drugs.

” It is against this background that the agency is currently working out modalities to engage member states of the subregion on bilateral agreements.

” This will lead to the signing of Memoranda of Understanding  that will strengthen cooperation, enhance intelligence sharing and mitigate constraints.”

In his remarks, Chairman, ECOWAS Commission, Marcel de Souza, represented by retired Col. Diange Abdulrahman,said West Africa is a regional hub for the production, trafficking and consumption of illicit drugs and other related crimes.

He lamented,”The lack of effective management and control of West Africa land, sea and air borders foster the prevalence of illicit drug trafficking, as well as organized crimes.”

Similarly, Commissioner of Police Salifou Assoumane who led the Nigerien team, said Niger republic remain  committed to ridding the Nigerian-Niger borders of illicit drug activities, criminal networks and the sale of falsified drugs among other trans-border crimes‎.

Also, the Interpol Team Leader, Mr Hakidu Illo, said that the training centred on how to detect illicit drugs concealed  in vehicles, shoes, containers and other personal effects of the drug traffickers.

” The essence of the operation is to clamp down on illicit drug cartels and to recover stolen vehicles from Europe, alongside other vital documents, such as International Passports.

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