By Evelyn Usman
An attempt by a Brazilian-based Nigerian to allegedly smuggle five Kilogrammes of pure Cocaine into the country has been foiled by operatives of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport Command, following his arrest.
The suspect identified as Ibeh Chukwuma, as gathered, arrived the International Airport via Ethiopian Airline, with a maximum ECOLAC bag, in which the drug was found.
However, during interrogation, 36-year-old Chukwuma, a resident of Sao Palo, Brazil, who worked in a construction company since 2011, disclosed that a Nigerian, also based in Brazil, gave him the drug to deliver to an unknown person at the airport in Abuja, with a promise to pay him N500,000.
He further stated that he was forced to bring the drug because he needed the money for his forth coming traditional marriage.
The Primary school leaver, said “ Emmanuel Paul gave me the drug. He deals in foodstuff and also operates a restaurant in Brazil. He is my friend.
“I asked him for financial assistance for my marriage and he said he would not give me the money except I carried the Cocaine. He actually told me that it was a drug but I have no choice because I was in need of money”.
The agency’s Principal Staff Officer, Public Affairs, Jonah Achema, who confirmed the arrest, disclosed it came on the heels of a similar arrest of one Udeagwu Emmanuel Ugwuchukwu, at the Abuja Airport with 3.1 kilograms of Cocaine from the same Sao Polo, Brazil aboard Ethiopian Airline. The substance according to him, was concealed in a home theatre musical equipment.
The Commander, NDLEA Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja Hamisu Lawan, who noted that five Kilograms of pure Cocaine was a huge seizure, said it was worth N100 million if adulterated.
According to Lawan, “Over time we have seen a decrease in the volume of interceptions but we are surprised that this quantity is coming again. Our interaction with some suspicious passengers indicate urgent need to have closer link with Ethiopian counter-narcotic officials because intelligence indicates that the place is being used for warehousing of drugs or relay purposes for drug trafficking”.