The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) has seized a 7.5-kilogramme of cocaine at the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) Port, Port Harcourt.
The Director of Prosecution and Legal Services, Barrister Sunday Mbona, who disclosed this at a press briefing in Port Harcourt, said three men have been arrested in connection with the seizure.
He recalled that this was the first time traffickers were using NPA Port in Port Harcourt as route for drug smuggling, saying earlier seizure of low quantities had previously been made at the Onne Port.
“In this port, this is the first seizure we have made since this year, and the magnitude of this seizure is also the largest we have made this year. In Onne Port, we have cases of arrest of people holding little quantities of drugs.
“Commander of the state command, who is here can tell you that they have been combing the nooks and crannies of Rivers State, and have made considerable number of arrests. Why they diverted those drugs here is probably because of the heat that is currently on them over the seaport in Lagos.”
Mbona said the seizure was a product of professional management of information, hard-work, perseverance and sheer commitment of the personnel that were involved in the operation.
“This disposition, tacitly supported by the NDLEA management under the Chairmanship of Col. Mohammad Mustapha Abdallah (rtd) in terms of encouragement and logistics from the scarce resources of the agency, is what resulted into this successful seizure”, he said.
According to him, the choice of the NPA Port in Port Harcourt to smuggle the seized cocaine must have been deliberate based on the perceived laxity at the port, but for the vigilance, and proactive disposition of the NDLEA, the seizure was made.
“This is a clear indication that the management’s drive in repositioning the NDLEA into an intelligence-led proactive law-enforcement outfit is yielding the desired result”, he said.
He also noted that this seizure was first of its kind in the existence of the NPA Port in Port Harcourt, stressing that no entry/exist point of the country was free from the activities of illicit traffickers of drugs in the country.
The director said that drug traffickers were continuously searching for and targeting the weakness in national security, and law enforcement systems, in terms of place and time, to perpetrate their nefarious activities.
Susan Serekara-Nwikhana & Benice Iragunima