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NDLEA intercepts shipment of cannabis disguised as boxing kits at Lagos Airport

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Operatives of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency, NDLEA, at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, MMIA Ikeja Lagos on New Year day, Monday 1st January 2024 intercepted a consignment of Colorado, a very strong strain of cannabis, concealed in boxing kits imported from the United States of America.

A weeklong intelligence-led operation to get the receiver arrested was consummated on Saturday 6th January following the successful tracking and arrest of 38-year-old Olorunfunmi Saheed Olakunle who distributes the dangerous psychoactive substance to dealers across Lagos state. The consignment had arrived the country on Monday 1st January via Cairo on Egypt Airlines flight marked as boxing kits.

According to Saheed, he delivers such consignments to different recipients whenever his childhood friend, US-based Sagir Salami sends them. The latest shipment has a total weight of 1.80 kilograms.

Meanwhile, a 28-year-old female supplier of ammunition to bandits, Bilkisu Suleman came top on the list of twelve (12) other suspects arrested by NDLEA operatives in new year interdiction operations in Kaduna, Lagos, Niger, Kogi, Kano, Borno, and Osun states.

Bilkisu was arrested on Wednesday 3rd January by NDLEA officers on patrol along Zaria Kano expressway in possession of 249 rounds of 7.62 mm live ammunition concealed in a black nylon bag kept in her lady’s handbag.

She was on her way to deliver the ammunition to an identified bandit in Kakumi village, Katsina state when she was nabbed after which she was transferred to the Kaduna state command of the Nigeria Police Force for further investigation.

The military authorities at the Bonny camp cantonment in Lagos on Tuesday 2nd January transferred a suspect, Francis Suru, 37 and 63 jumbo bags of Ghana Loud, a strain of cannabis, weighing 2,104.2 kilograms and a truck to the Lagos state command of NDLEA.

The suspect and the drug exhibits were earlier intercepted by NDLEA officers on 12th December 2023 close to the gate of the military cantonment in Bonny Camp, Victoria Island. Some armed escorts however resorted to sporadic shooting to obstruct the operation, a development which attracted soldiers from the cantonment, who eventually intervened and took custody of the consignment and suspect before transferring them to the Agency.

In the same vein, NDLEA operatives in Niger state on Thursday 5th January during a stop and search operation along Suleja-Kaduna road intercepted a J5 bus coming from Ondo state to Zaria, Kaduna state with twenty-three (23) bags of cannabis sativa weighing 219.5kg. Two suspects: Umar Musa, 26 and Isachiru Abubakar were arrested in connection with the seizure.

While a female drug trafficker, Queen Onyema, 27, was arrested on Saturday 6th January in a commercial bus enroute Abuja along Okene-Lokoja expressway with 12 compressed blocks of cannabis weighing 4.6kg and 0.046kg designer drugs concealed in an indomie carton, another suspect Mubarak Sani, 20, was nabbed at Gadar Tamburawa area of Kano on Monday 1st January with 445.9k kilograms of the same psychoactive substance.

In Borno, four suspects: Zanna Alhaji Dala, 32; Musa Umar, 21; Mushe Ibrahim, 23, and Shehu Idris, 19 were arrested at Pomfomari bye pass area of the state with 60kg cannabis.

Also, in Osun, NDLEA operatives on patrol along Osogbo-Ode Omu road on new year day, Monday 1st January intercepted a consignment of illicit drugs sent through waybill from Lagos to Osogbo. A follow-up operation led to the arrest of Ibrahim Olawale, 43. The drugs recovered include: cannabis sativa 10.8kg; Loud 150grams; Colorado 19grams; Molly 5grams totalling 10.974kg. A digital scale, N18,000 monetary exhibit and customized wrapping papers for Colorado were also seized.

NDLEA Commands across the 36 states and the FCT equally continued their War Against Drug Abuse, WADA, sensitisation lectures in schools, communities, work places and others. Some of these include: WADA sensitisation lecture for students of Nurul Huda Community Islamiyya school, Farin Yaro, Katsina; members of first aid group of Jamaatul Izalatul Bidia Waiqamatus Sunnah (JIBWIS) at Ajilari community school, Gomari, Maiduguri, Borno; WADA sensitisation lecture at the 2024 Oke Afo youth day, Olorunda LCDA Lagos and WADA advocacy visit to the Emir of Gaya, Alhaji Aliyu Ibrahim Gaya by the Kano state command of the Agency.

Commending the arrests and seizures of the past week by officers and men of the MMIA, Lagos, Niger, Kogi, Kano, Borno, and Osun Commands, Chairman/Chief Executive Officer of NDLEA, Brig. Gen. Mohamed Buba Marwa (Retd) charged them and their compatriots across all formations of the Agency to continue to remain vigilant and double their drug demand reduction as well as drug supply reduction efforts in the new year.

Crime

NAF bombs terrorists hideouts in Borno

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The Air Component of Operation Hadin Kai, OPHK, and the Nigerien Air Force on Tuesday eliminated scores of terrorists and destroyed their hideouts in Damasak and Mobbar local government areas of Borno State.

A statement by the Director, Public Relations and Information of NAF, AVM Edward Gabkwet, on Wednesday in Abuja, said that the interdictions were under the Multi-National Joint Task Force, MNJTF.

Gabkwet said the terrorists had attempted to attack troops of Sector 4 of the MNJTF at Lada, a border town between Niger Republic and Nigeria, and subsequently fled across the border into Nigeria.

According to him, the fleeing terrorists who were on eight motorcycles were later tracked to two locations in Zarri village, about 28 kilometers east of Damasak and Mala Alide in Mobbar areas of Borno.

He further stated that they were observed hibernating in the village with their motorcycles hidden under trees.

“Subsequently, airstrikes from the Air Component of OPHK and Nigerien Air Force, under the watchful eye of Niger’s Intelligence Surveillance Reconnaissance (ISR) aircraft, struck the terrorists’ locations.

“Real-time ISR footage later confirmed numerous terrorists were eliminated and several structures within the targeted areas destroyed.

“Collaborative efforts of this nature have continued to yield positive outcomes on both sides of the border.

“It has also led to the reduction in terrorism and other forms of cross-border crimes perpetrated by criminals crisis-crossing the borders to evade justice,” he added.

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Sex Scandal: We won’t oppose any sanction against lecturer — ASUU UNN

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The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has said that the union would not oppose any sanction against the lecturer allegedly involved in sex scandal in a video trending in the social media.

Chairperson of ASUU, University of Nigeria Nsukka, (UNN), Dr Oyibo Eze said this in Nsukka on Tuesday while reacting to the alleged attempt by a lecturer in UNN to have sex with a female student in his office on Monday.

“ASUU will not oppose any sanction if after investigations, the suspect is found guilty of allegation to have attempted to have sex with a female student in his office.

“We should all know that every action has its consequences,” he said.

He said that ASUU condemned the alleged act by the lecturer identified as Mr. David Udom-Udom of the Social Science Unit, School of General Studies (GS) of the UNN.

“I saw the trending video of the alleged act yesterday and this morning I went  to GS department and confirmed the incident in the viral video on Monday.

“Lecturers should see students as their children by displaying high sense of discipline, morality and avoid asking sex for mark.

“It is condemnable and that is what happens when a dog eats the bone hung on its neck.

“Our job as lecturers is to teach students not to harass them sexually,” he said.

Reacting to the incident, Comrade Enoch Utazi, the President, Students Union Government (SUG) of the UNN, also condemned the alleged act by Udom to have sex with a student for mark.

Utazi said SUG would follow the matter to its logical conclusion to ensure that the affected randy lecturer was punished according to rules and regulations of the university.

“SUG will ensure this randy lecturer is punished to serve as deterrent to others who exploit female students sexually in order to give them mark,” Utazi said.

Meanwhile, Mr. Chris Alumona, the Chief Security Officer of UNN, when contacted, confirmed the incident and said that the randy lecturer Udom-Udom had been arrested and handed over to the police.

Alumona said his office acted on tip-off from UNN Department of Students Affairs on what was happening on Monday in Udom’s office

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Alleged N8.5bn fraud: You have case to answer, Lagos court tells NIMASA staff, ex-JTF Commander

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Justice Ayokunle Faji of the Federal High Court sitting in Ikoyi, Lagos, on Monday, April 22, 2024, told a former Commander of the Joint Military Task Force, Operation Pulo Shield, Major-General Emmanuel Atewe ( rtd.), and a  staff of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, NIMASA, Kime Engonzu, that they have a case to answer in the alleged N8.5bn money laundering case brought against them by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

Atewe and Engonzu are standing trial on a 22-count charge bordering on money laundering to the tune of N8, 537,586,798.58, which also involves a former Director-General of NIMASA, Patrick Akpobolokemi, and Josephine Otuaga, also a staff of NIMASA.

One of the counts reads: “That you, Patrick Ziadeke Akpobolokemi, Major General Emmanuel Atewe, Kime Engozu, and Josphine Otuaga, sometime in 2014, in Lagos, within the jurisdiction of this Court, with intent to defraud, conspired amongst yourselves to commit an offence to wit: conversion of the sum of N8,537,586,798.58 property of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency and you thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 18 (a) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act 2012 and punishable under Section 15 (3) of the same Act.”

They pleaded “not guilty” to the charges, thereby prompting the commencement of their trial.

In the course of the trial, the prosecution called several witnesses and subsequently closed its case against the defendants.

However, the defendants, rather than open their defence, filed a no-case-submission.

Akpobolokemi had, in a no-case submission, filed by his lawyer, Dr. Joseph Nwobike, SAN, prayed the court for an acquittal without having him present a defence.

Ruling on the no-case submission on Monday, Justice  Faji discharged and acquitted Akpobolokemi  and Otuaga, the fourth defendant.

He however, ruled that Atewe, the second defendant, and Engonzu, the third defendant, should open their defence in counts 12 to 22 of the charge.

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