By Adedapo Adesanya
Operatives of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) have arrested a cleaner at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMIA), Ikeja Lagos, Mr Ohiagu Sunday, who allegedly leads a drug syndicate at the international wing of the airport.
This was disclosed by NDLEA spokesman, Mr Femi Babafemi, in a statement on Sunday, noting that the suspect was nabbed on Tuesday, August 23 following the arrest of an intending passenger on an Air Peace flight to Dubai, UAE, Mr Obinna Jacob Osita who was arrested with three bags, two of which contained eight blocks of cannabis Sativa weighing 4.25kg concealed in cassava product, garri, and crayfish.
One other member of the airport syndicate who works with Ohiagu has also been arrested while operatives are after another suspect.
Investigations revealed that a Dubai-based drug dealer recruited Obinna, a 42-year-old native of Oyi Local Government Area, Anambra State to traffic the drugs and equally contracted Ohiagu, a 34-year-old airport cleaner from Orlu West Local Government Area of Imo State to create access for the unhindered passage of the trafficker.
The drug syndicate bust, which is the first drug arrest at the new terminal of the MMIA comes on the heels of the seizure of a consignment of bottles of Viju drink and Fearless energy drinks used to conceal skunk for export to Dubai, UAE through the NAHCO export shed on Monday 15th Aug. A freight agent has already been arrested in connection with the seizure.
In the same vein, an attempt by a syndicate to export illicit drugs through the Lagos airport on Wednesday, August 24 was foiled during an outward clearance of passengers on Ethiopian Airline to Oman via Addis Ababa.
Another suspect, Mr Jonah Chukwuemeka was arrested with a total of 1,995 Tramadol tablets with a gross weight of 900 grams hidden in locust beans in his luggage. The bag containing the illicit substance was handed over to him at the airport by one Olagunju Abbas who was promptly arrested.
Packs of Tramadol 225mg containing 119,500 capsules were Thursday, August 25 transferred to NDLEA by the Nigeria Customs, cargo wing of MMIA. The consignment had come in through Ethiopian Airlines from Pakistan.
Meanwhile, NDLEA operatives on Saturday raided a car shop, Bolak Motors at Ewela bus stop, Oshodi where bags of 615.2kg cannabis were recovered along with nine vehicles. Efforts are ongoing to track the car dealer, Alhaji Ismail, who is currently at large.
No fewer than eight suspects were arrested and bags of illicit drugs were seized from them when Akerele area of Agege, Shogunle and Mafoluku areas of Oshodi, Fagba area of Ogba, Ipodo area of Ikeja, and Iyana Ipaja park was raided in the state.
In Yobe state, two suspected fake security agents taking 14kg of cannabis to Maiduguri, Borno state were intercepted along Potiskum- Damaturu road. While Adetula Olarenwaju was arrested with four blocks of the substance on Thursday, August 25 on his way from Lagos, Sadiq Garba returning from Gombe was nabbed with 22 blocks of the substance on Saturday 27th Aug.
Similarly, in Edo, Abu Segun Sunday was arrested with 48.4kg cannabis at Idk quarter, Ibilo, while Rosemary Afekhuai was caught with 1,130 tramadol caps, among others at Oluma quarters, Otuo, Owan East LGA.
In Delta, a Mustapha Isah, was arrested at Oko Market with 9, 800 Tramadol caps weighing 6.4kg while NDLEA operatives in Kaduna also nabbed Mr Chinedu Onnuka, at Narayi Kaduna with 33,000 tablets of Bromazepam.
No fewer than 80 blocks of cannabis Sativa were recovered from an abandoned tricycle with reg. no: BAU 70 WL while 25,000 tablets of exol-5 were seized from a dealer, Usman Muhammed who was nabbed along Bauchi-Gombe road.
A raid operation at a market in Mubi, Adamawa state on Wednesday, August 24 led to the seizure of 62,360 tablets of tramadol, diazepam, and exol-5 while two suspects, Sirajo Idris and Anas Abubakar were arrested the same day with 107 pallets of cannabis at Kamba, a border town in Kebbi State.
The skunk weighing 90kg was smuggled in from Benin Republic.
In Kano, a suspected drug dealer Mr Lawal Adamu, 31, was arrested along Zaria-Kano road, Kwanar Dangora, with 203 blocks of cannabis weighing 136kg, while another suspect, Taheer Abdullahi was nabbed on Friday, August 26 at Gadar Tamburawa, with 3000 ampules of tramadol injection.
A raid operation at Kara Masaka, back of Mararaba market and Zamani estate on Saturday, August 27 led to the arrest of 26 suspects, while 25.7kg cannabis, 4.5kg codeine, and 300 tablets of rohypnol tablets were seized from the drug joints raided.
Meanwhile, in Sokoto state, the village head of Ruga, Shagari LGA, Alhaji Umaru Mohammed (aka Danbala), a notable suspect who was arrested on Monday, August 22 will be facing charges any moment from now. Before his recent arrest during which 436.381kg cannabis and 1kg diazepam were recovered from his house, an earlier raid on his home on July 20th 2022 had also led to the seizure of 11.5kg cannabis, 2.259kg exol5, and 500grams of diazepam.
On his part, the Chairman/Chief Executive of NDLEA, Mr Mohamed Buba Marwa commended the officers and men of the MMIA, Kano, Kaduna, Yobe, Bauchi, Adamawa, Nasarawa, Edo, Delta and Lagos Commands for the arrests and seizures.
He charged them and their compatriots across the country not to rest on their oars.
NIN Enrollment Jumps to 92.63 million in November 2022
By Adedapo Adesanya
The National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) has revealed that enrollment for the National Identification Number (NIN) rose to 92.63 million as of November 28, 2022.
In the latest data released by the commission, a total of 1.95 million new NIN enrollments were in November, as the database grew by 2.2 per cent from the 90.68 million at the end of October.
In terms of gender distribution, the NIMC data revealed that 52.1 million people, representing 56 per cent of Nigerians so far captured in the NIN database, are male, while the remaining 40.5 million (44 per cent) are female.
According to the statistics, Lagos State has so far recorded the highest number of enrolments in the country, with 10.3 million Nigerians captured in the State. This was followed by Kano State, which recorded 8 million registered NIN.
Other states that made the top ten in terms of the number of enrolments include Kaduna with 5.4 million, Ogun with 3.8 million, Oyo with 3.6 million, FCT with 3.2 million, Katsina with 3.1 million, Rivers with 2.7 million, Delta with 2.4 million, and Bauchi also with 2.4 million NIN registrations.
The NIMC data shows that the ten states with the lowest NIN enrolments are Zamfara with 1.6 million total enrolments as of November, Akwa Ibom with 1.5 million, Imo with 1.5 million, Enugu with 1.5 million, Yobe with 1.3 million, Taraba with 1.3 million, Cross River with 1 million, Ekiti with 971,712, Ebonyi with 744,869, and Bayelsa with 583,323.
The commission had recently pledged to scale up enrolment and issuance of the unique National Identification Numbers (NIN) to Nigerians and legal residents, from 500,000 to 2.5 million records monthly in a renewed commitment towards the provision of Identity services to the nation.
Pursuant to Act No. 23 of 2007, amongst others, create and manage the National Identity Database, enrol citizens and legal residents and issue them a unique NIN, a general multipurpose card, as well as harmonize and integrate existing identification databases in government agencies into the National Identity Database.
Section 27(1) and (2) of the Act, 2007 also mandates all government and private agencies providing services as captured in the NIMC Act to make the NIN a prerequisite for service provision to Citizens and Legal residents.
The NIN not only affirms the identity of an individual, but it also avails the government necessary information needed for national planning, the creation of social intervention initiatives, tracking and monitoring crime, curb corruption nationwide, and other numerous benefits.
Experts, Others to Discuss Potential Risks in Real Estate Transactions in Lagos
By Modupe Gbadeyanka
The Lagos State Real Estate Regulatory Authority (LASRERA) has invited critical stakeholders in the real estate market to the 3rd Real Estate Market Place Conference and Exhibition.
The two-day event will commence on December 6, 2022, at the Eko Hotel and Suites, Victoria Island, Lagos, with Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu expected to declare it open.
According to the organisers, participants will discuss The Lagos Real Estate Emerging Markets – Mitigating Potential Risks.
They will focus on potential risks in real estate transactions, laws that protect real estate investment transactions, and policies and guidelines about Lagos State real estate sector.
Recall that on February 7, 2022, Mr Sanwo-Olu signed the LASRERA bill into law in a bid to regulate, sanitise, and protect individuals from illegal real estate transactions and fraudulent persons/organisations, monitor the activities of real estate transactions and ensure real estate transactions in the state conform to global best practices.
This conference is sponsored by a luxury property development company, The Address Homes, as part of its contribution to the growth of the real estate sector in Nigeria.
“The partnership between Address Homes and Lagos State Government on this conference and exhibition would further propel the already existing collaboration to promote integrity, professionalism, customer satisfaction and safety in the real estate industry in Nigeria,” the Marketing Manager of The Address Homes, Mr Segun Ogunbiyi, noted.
He said the company is also a major exhibitor of the programme, showcasing real estate development with a combination of high-class, contemporary architectural design and high-level finishes with respect to designs and styles that meet consumer passion, taste and comfort.
Rising Electoral Violence Cases Frighten CNPP
By Modupe Gbadeyanka
The Conference of Nigeria Political Parties (CNPP) has expressed concerns over the spate of attacks on facilities of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and campaign rallies across the country.
Nigerian heads to the polls in February 2023 to elect a new President, governors and lawmakers.
Ahead of the general elections, there have been pockets of violence at political rallies, with attacks on politicians and their followers becoming rampant, in a few cases, leading to death.
In a statement issued on Monday, CNPP feared that the exercise is under threat despite assurances by relevant stakeholders, including INEC, that the poll would not be shifted.
The group, in the statement signed by its Secretary General, Mr Willy Ezugwu, warned that “unless political thugs were treated as enemies of the state, the ongoing attacks on political opponents would gravely endanger the credibility of the 2023 elections.”
“Despite the recent matching orders to the security agencies by President Muhammadu Buhari, which was reiterated by the National Security Adviser (NSA) to the President, Mr Babagana Monguno, to the effect that the President has given the go-ahead to all security agencies to deal decisively with individuals or groups trying to prevent peaceful conduct of the 2023 general election, the hope of a violent free electioneering campaign may be dashed.
“Our major fear is that from the records of the federal government, as revealed by the NSA that Nigeria recorded 52 acts of political violence across 22 states in one month, between October 8 and November 9, 2022, there seems to be gross inaction on the part of security agencies, particularly the Nigeria Police Force to arrest and prosecute the perpetrators of this violence.
“Worse still, after the recent emergency meeting of the Inter-agency Consultative Committee on Election Security (ICCES), organised by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in Abuja, Nigerians have seen nothing but inactions by security agencies in preventing or arresting and diligently prosecuting perpetrators of the ongoing electoral violence and their sponsors.
“Every lover of Nigeria and her future knows that, as far as violent attacks on political opponents and opposing political parties in states is concerned, the situation is becoming alarming as one of the elementary security measures is crime prevention.
“For instance, last week, there was a suspected politically motivated assassination of Victoria Chintex, the Labour Party women leader in Kaura Local Government Area of Kaduna State, who was reportedly killed last Monday after gunmen invaded her residence and shot her.
“At the weekend, there were reports that the Labour Party’s rally in the Lakowe town area of Lekki, Lagos State, was visited with violence by suspected political thugs allegedly sponsored by the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the area.
“In November, suspected APC supporters attacked supporters of the Peoples Democratic Party presidential candidate, Atiku Abubarkar, in Maiduguri, Borno State, just as on October 17, suspected thugs also disrupted the campaign train of the PDP in Kaduna State.
“In the same month of October, some supporters of the APC in Oyo State were reportedly injured in Ibadan during a campaign rally when some hoodlums in some vehicles allegedly launched an attack on the crowd.
“In Ebonyi State, a State Government sponsored security outfit, Ebubeagu, has been severally reported to have been unleashing against political opponents of the APC leadership in the state, among other several incidents of political violence in other states across the country”, the CNPP recalled.
“If truly President Muhammadu Buhari has given his directive through the NSA to all the operational intelligence and law enforcement agencies to ensure that the 2023 elections are held in an atmosphere devoid of any rancour, as the NSA has disclosed recently, why are we not seeing security agencies discouraging political thuggery in the country?
“We, therefore, call on all political party leaders at all levels to restrain their supporters both online and offline from carrying out violent activities against oppositions.
“This has become imperative as retaliations and counter-attacks by victims of the ongoing violence could degenerate the issues and worsen the current security situation in the country.
“We call on President Muhammadu Buhari, who was said to be extremely pleased with the outcome of the results of elections in Anambra, Ekiti and Osun states to ensure a repeat of such performance in 2023, both by INEC and all security agencies, including the anti-graft bodies because an election is not war”, the CNPP stated.
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