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Journalist, patent medicine dealer nab for drug trafficking



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THE appointment of an acting Chairman, National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) has started yielding result as the agency has arrested six drug suspects at the Muritala Mohammed International Airport, Lagos.
Among those arrested are a Brazil-based freelance journalist Anagbogu Churchill Okwudili, a 25-year old single lady, and a patent medicine dealer. They were apprehended at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMIA) Lagos with 13.410kg of substances that tested positive for narcotics.
According to the Commander, NDLEA at the Lagos airport Command, Ahmadu Garba gave the names of the suspects as follows: Gabriel Chidimma Juliet, 25, caught with 2.900kg of cocaine in duty free bag; Anagbogu Churchill Okwudili, 48, who ingested 47 wraps of cocaine weighing 940 grammes and Enenchi Jerome Oguejiefor, 36, who concealed 5.500kg of cannabis inside fufu.
Others are Ani Kennedy Tochukwu, 32, who packed 21 wraps of cocaine weighing 350 grammes inside jean trousers, Eletamuzor Celestine Kenechukwu, 28, who was caught with a kilogramme of ephedrine inside hair attachment and Okpala Vitus Arinzechukwu, 35, nabbed with 2.720kg of cocaine.
It was learnt that Kenechukwu and Oguejiefor attempted to export ephedrine and cannabis to South Africa and Dubai while others were apprehended for smuggling drugs into the country. The suspects attributed their involvement to the financial rewards offered them to carry the drugs.
The only female suspect, Juliet who hails from Imo state and resides in Abuja said her boyfriend who lives in the United Arab Emirates gave her the drugs.
“Since I left secondary school in 2010, I have been trading to sustain myself. I buy goods in Dubai and sell in Abuja. It is unfortunate this time around that cocaine was found in the bag my boyfriend gave to me in Dubai.”
Churchill, from Anambra state, a freelance journalist, said that he was frustrated into dealing in drugs. “I graduated from the London School of Journalism in 2005 and I am a freelance journalist. I have been in Brazil for about two years and my standard of living is very poor. My condition was such that I could not afford return ticket to visit my wife and children in Nigeria for about two years. It was frustration from my inability to discharge my responsibility as a father and a husband that led me into drug trafficking” he stated.
Jerome said: “I was managing a patent medicine shop in Port Harcourt before I travelled to Dubai in search of greener pastures. After seven months of fruitless search for job, I returned to Nigeria poorer than I left. This was the beginning of my problems. In my desperate search for a way out, a friend of mine in Dubai requested that I should send cannabis to him and that he will give me money to help myself. This was what happened and I used Fufu to cover the drug but was detected.”
Tochukwu said he wanted to raise some money from drug trafficking. “I am a factory worker in Brazil for about one and half year. My meagre earnings could barely sustain my daily needs until a friend introduced me to drug trafficking. This is my first time” the suspect who hails from Enugu state.
Arinzechukwu who is a mason said that he was working in the village but was not satisfied with his earning. “After my primary school in 1999 I could not further my education due to poverty. I work in my village as a mason but I have nothing in return for my hard work. I have suffered in life and needed to start another business but I had no money. In the process of looking for help, I met a man who promised to assist me financially. He processed my travel documents and gave me N150, 000 to bring drug from Dubai.”
The other suspect, Kelechukwu, a jobless man, hails from Anambra state concealed ephedrine in hair attachment. He confessed that he was to send the drug to his friend in South Africa who promised to reward him handsomely.
The Acting Chairman, NDLEA, Mrs Roli Bode-George cautioned members of the public to avoid wrong association.
“The Agency has put in place several measures to prevent drug trafficking. We are also committed to speedy investigation and trial of offenders. Let me call on members of the public to be mindful of the association they keep” Roli stated.

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