Akwa Ibom: 239 drug traffickers arrested in 10-months

The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency says it has arrested a total of 239 suspected drug traffickers comprising 197 males and 42 females in Akwa Ibom State between July 2022 and May 2023.

It also seized drugs weighing over 1, 465.99kg and counselled 160 persons, who used drugs, treated and rehabilitated 15 clients during the period under review.

The Commander of NDLEA in Akwa Ibom, Mrs Obot Bassey disclosed this while briefing newsmen as part of activities to commemorate the International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking in Uyo on Monday

She added that the command had secured 59 convictions of drug offenders within the period.

She said: “From last year’s celebration till this moment, NDLEA Akwa Ibom State Command has been committed to saving humanity through its mandate of eliminating illicit drugs from homes and streets through arrests, seizures of illicit drugs.

“Prosecution of drug dealers preventive mechanisms of campaign and awareness creation on the consequences of illicit drugs abuse.“From July 2022 to May 2023, the State Command arrested a total of 239 suspects made up of 197 males and 42 females. Seized drugs weighing 1, 465.99 kg, convicted 59 drug offenders,” Bassey said.

The commander disclosed that the drug is commonly abused in the state to include; cannabis Sativa, Cocaine, Heroine, Meth and Amphetamine among other psychotropic substances.

Bassey said that prevention is a vital tool against drug abuse, stressing that sensitisation and campaign would be used by the command to reduce drug abuse to the barest minimum from the state.

She said the command aimed at increasing awareness about the importance of treating people who use drugs with respect and empathy.

She said, “The campaign also aims to combat stigma and discrimination against attitudes that are respectful and non judgemental.”

While appealing to the State Government, philanthropists and all individuals to join hands with the command to reduce drug abuse and trafficking to the barest minimum, Bassey called on the state government to assist the command with utility vehicles to patrol the 31 local government areas, especially border areas to curb drug trafficking in the state.