Officials of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) raided the Ujogba Forest Reserve in the West Esan administrative district of Edo State, destroying 7,286 kg of stored skunk and 5 hectares of substance plantation.
The NDLEA spokesman Femi Babafemi issued a statement yesterday saying the special operation, carried out on February 22, followed credible intelligence. The info was that some cartels had warehoused hundreds of jumbo bags of the illicit substance inside the forest for distribution to some states ahead of the general elections.
Babafemi said the operation could not go on immediately until several obstacles set by the drug lord’s armed guards had been cleared. The drug lords were, however, overwhelmed by the superior firepower of the agency’s strike force officers.
The statement reads,
“After the initial resistance, two rifles, spent cartridges of short guns and empty shell of AK47 rifles were recovered while a 24-year-old suspect, Calvary Essien, was arrested.
“This is coming on the heels of a similar operation on Wednesday 18th January in the Opuje forest in Owan West Local Government Area of the state where massive warehouses and tents storing over 317,417 kilograms (317.4 metric tons) of the psychoactive substance were destroyed and set ablaze in a two-day operation.
“At least, a police impersonator, Omoruan Theophilus, 37, who was parading as a Police Inspector to convey the drugs from the forests to the cities and three others: Aigberuan Jacob, 42; Ekeinde Anthony Zaza, 53, and Naomi Patience Ohiewere, 42, were arrested in connection with the drugs.”
“In his reaction to the latest operation in Ujiogba forest, Chairman/Chief Executive Officer of NDLEA, Brig. Gen. Mohamed Buba Marwa (Retd) commended all the officers involved in the effort and all the almost 10,000 officers, men and women deployed across the country in the pre-election renewed offensive action to clear every part of the country of illicit substances for use by thugs and miscreants before, during and after the elections. He said taking the battle to the doorsteps of the cartels deep in the forests is to attack the menace of drug supply from the source and to also send the right message to the barons that there is no safe haven for them and their investments anywhere in Nigeria.”
cc: The Nations Ng