Chinazor Megbolu |
The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) has on Monday arrested another passenger with cocaine worth N7 billion at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMIA).
This was coming three days after the agency arrested a suspect with cocaine on arrival from Brazil. The NDLEA officials apprehended a traveler, Mr. Ukaegbu Bright Onyekachi, with the same banned substance a E-arrival wing of MMIA.
He was said to be a passenger with Ethiopian Airlines from Guarulhos International Airport, Sao Paolo, Brazil via Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. The Commander, MMIA, Mr. Ahmadu Garba in his address, said the impounded drugs weighed 3.30 kilograms during the time of seizure.
The suspect Ukaegbu, he added, claimed that he wasn’t aware the drug was concealed in the check-in luggage and allegedly given to him by one Kingsley, a Nigerian based in Brazil.
Garba maintained that the suspect cleverly hid the drug in 68 T-shirts after heat transfer, probably in a factory in Brazil.
He also noted that the mode of concealment was ingenious, but assured the officials of the agency with their experience would continue to expose any modes of concealment by the couriers.
“The total weight of the seized drug is 3.30kg. It is not really a significant seizure when you compare it to the 8.5kg cocaine that was seized recently, but when you look at this seizure, the mode of concealment is very tricky. Our officials have to be experienced to discover this.
“Drug trafficking is a huge money business and definitely, anything that is money, people will want to do it. I want to say that the Covid-19 pandemic slowed them down and I want to believe they want to meet up with the lost time.
“However, during the pandemic, my officers had enough time to do some refresher courses especially online. I want to say the training we had during this period had helped our officials to learn some of the ingenious ways they conceal these drugs,” he said.
Garba, however, averred that the NDLEA would not give room for any dastardly act through the airport.
He further pointed out that the emergence of the new Chairman, NDLEA, General Buba Marwa (rtd), had further deepened the zeal and passion of officials of the agency to do a creditable job.
Meanwhile, Ukaegbu, in his confessional statement, said the check-in luggage was handed over to him by one Kingsley in Brazil.
According to Ukaegbu; “I was not aware that the drug was in my check-in luggage. The person that handed over the luggage to me told me there was nothing inside the bag. I thoroughly checked the bag for drugs. What I saw there were clothes for children and adults.
“He was someone I met there as a Nigerian and his name is Kingsley. I don’t have his contact and he promised that someone will come and meet me today (Tuesday) to collect the luggage from me. I didn’t have the phone contact of Kingsley.
“This is my first time of being caught in this web. I have never been found or in possession of any drug in my life. This is my first time of experiencing this and my first time of seeing drugs”.
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