NDLEA DESTROYS 110.5 TONS OF ILLICIT DRUGS IN ONDO STATE
National Drug Law Enforcement Agency, NDLEA has destroyed drugs weighing 110.542 tons in Akure, Ondo State. This is the single largest public destruction of exhibits by burning, coming after the one by Edo State which gross weight was 136 tons. The drugs, mainly Cannabis sativa, were some of the seizures made by NDLEA Ondo State Command within a four year period. In 2014, the Agency destroyed well over 80 tons of similar drugs in Ondo State.
Chairman/Chief Executive of NDLEA, Col. Muhammad Mustapha Abdallah (Rtd.) described the drug situation in Ondo State as “frightening and sad.” “Sadly, apart from this quantity heaped for destruction, there are still tons of Cannabis sativa that we are yet to secure court order to destroy. We have also destroyed 1, 418. 635 hectares of Cannabis plantations in Ondo State between 2015 and 2018”, he said.
According to Abdallah who was represented by Femi Oloruntoba, Chief of Staff to the Chairman, Ondo State remained one of the six States in Nigeria where Cannabis is cultivated in large quantities. “As a result of Cannabis plantations, it is becoming increasingly difficult to find virgin forests, thus exposing the State to deforestation and soil degradation”.
Col. Abdallah urged Ondo State Government to embrace Alternative Development Programme through the provision of land, expertise, implement, seedlings, chemicals and buying up the harvests at attractive rates, thus addressing poverty, food insecurity and unemployment.
Ondo State Governor, Oluwarotimi Odunayo Akeredolu, SAN commended NDLEA for sustaining the efforts at de-escalating Cannabis production in the State. “We appreciate the grave consequences of drugs and the security implications, hence the inclusion of NDLEA in the State Security Council. We will continue to support the Agency so that together we cleanse the society of the drug menace,” the Governor noted.
Members of the State Executive Council, Judiciary, Heads of Security Agencies, Traditional Rulers, Religious Leaders, Corps Members and the Civil Society were among those who witnessed the public exhibit destruction.
Jonah Achema, ACN
Principal Staff Officer, Public Affairs