New Shenanigans of Drug Abusers and Traffickers



Some hard drugs packaged by traffickers


In their desperate quest to escape the eagle eyes of drug law enforcement agents, Nigerian drug traffickers are not sleeping. They are devoting enormous time and effort to seeking ways to carry on with their nefarious activities undetected.


Officers of the National Drug Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) and their counterparts in the Nigeria Police Force have many rivers to cross in their bid to curtail the movement of hard drugs within the country. This concern becomes even more disturbing in the face of the many strategies being mapped out by street-side drug traffickers to evade notice.


As Nigerians, we have every cause to be worried about the spate and sophistication of drug trafficking in our local communities. In Lagos, there is hardly any street where you won’t find drug trafficking cells involving different types of couriers, ranging from innocent children to teenagers who are working for their local barons. This emerging system of local trafficking will require serious and strategic thinking on the part of drug law enforcement agents to curtail, largely because these couriers receive some stipends for their efforts in a Nigerian society where poverty and the cost of living are taking a debilitating toll on the economies of families.


Recently, law enforcement agents in Lagos paraded a 10-year-old girl who was being used by her mother as a local drug courier. Knowing that it would be very unlikely for law enforcement agencies to stop and search a minor, her mother converted her into a drug courier by stuffing hard drugs, especially cannabis, in her underwear for onward movement to the selling point where customers usually came to buy. Who would have thought that a little girl would be involved in such an illicit trade?

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While investigations are still ongoing in the minor’s case, it must be reiterated here that Nigerian laws are explicit on matters relating to drug trafficking. Worse still, the case in question raises so much concern because it involves a child and reflects the level of desperation of traffickers who are bent on profiting from a trade that is responsible for the destruction of a nation’s most productive population in their millions.


It is equally important to state that there are several other minors in different parts of the country that are being used by drug traffickers. The NDLEA should intensify their covert operations, especially in areas with high concentration of local gin (ogogoro) joints. Most of these joints actually sell hard drugs like cannabis, Colorado, ice and the rest. In fact, there is a herbal mixture in town called adimenu that has all the characteristics of a hard drug, being peddled by hawkers of herbal mixtures, popularly known as alagbo.

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Some of the people who have taken this herbal mixture complained of the following immediate side effects: dizziness, euphoria, loss of concentration, and mental disorientation. Those saddled with the enforcement of our drug laws should, as a matter of urgency, also beam their searchlight on hawkers of herbal mixtures, especially those who claim to cure every sickness on earth (gbogbonise).


Interestingly, another bizarre drug trafficking system that is hard to believe is the use of religious houses and “religious leaders” for the peddling of hard drugs. This writer once witnessed the arrest of an alfa in a Lagos mosque as he wrapped cannabis for his customers. No one would have ever thought that such an unholy activity would take place in a place of worship but that is the new reality we have to face and tackle in Nigeria today. Sadly, after spending a couple of days in detention in the police station, the alfa was released without prosecution. This writer later discovered that some money was paid to the police as settlement.


In 2022, a Nigerian pastor and General Overseer of Christ Living Hope Church, Rev. Ugochukwu Emmanuel Ekwem, was arrested by officials of the NDLEA at the Murtala Mohammed International Airport, while on his way to a crusade in Nairobi, Kenya. Even God is not accorded respect by drug traffickers. If people could disrespect God and peddle drug in His name and house, then no one should be accorded any form of immunity in the fight against drug trafficking.

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While we commend the sincere efforts of the NDLEA, we also call on the leadership of the Nigeria Police to live above board when it comes to handling matters involving drug traffickers. Rather than just collect money and grant these local traffickers bail, the police should hand them over to the NDLEA which has the statutory responsibility to prosecute drug offenders in the country.


The damage that drug abuse and trafficking are causing in Nigerian communities is attaining alarming proportions. In my community in Lagos, no fewer than four people have run mad, with two of them now in rehab. I have vowed to commit most of my time as a writer to championing anti-drug campaigns. However, parents and guardians have very important roles to play. The attitude of “I am minding my business” will not help the fight against this rampaging societal cancer.



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