By CHIDI NKWOPARA
OWERRI—Imo State Command of National Drug Law Enforcement Agency, NDLEA, has prosecuted no fewer than 50 persons for drug trafficking since 2011.
State commandant of the NDLEA, Mr. Kaki Mshelia, who disclosed this in Owerri, said those prosecuted were a part of the 208 arrested during the period.
According to him, the 158 others are currently undergoing counseling.
He said: ”Between 2011 and today, the Command has arrested 208 drug suspects, prosecuted 50 persons and seized about 1,407.98 kilograms of assorted kinds of drugs, during he period under review”.
Mshelia said that in 2011, about 123 males and 24 female drug suspects were arrested, while 261.6 grammes of heroin, 95.4 grammes of cocaine and 361.253 kilo grammes of Indian hemp were seized.
He said 115 suspects were arrested in 2012, while 526.14 kilogrammes of Indian hemp and 137.20 grammes of heroine were seized by the command.
”In 2013, the Command arrested 185 males and 60 females in drug related offences. Similarly, 384.3 grammes of heroine, 861.9 grammes of cocaine and 1,406.784 kilogrammes of cannabis sativa were seized,” Mshelia said.
He further warned of the danger ahead in the state, if the rate of drug peddling, use and abuse was not checked immediately.
Mshelia lamented: “It is worrisome that despite the spirited efforts of the Command to curb the trend, the hard drugs are still available in the state.”
He called on youths and community leaders in the state to expose drug peddlers and users to the command for appropriate action, stressing that no meaningful development and investment could take place in an insecure environment.