Achievement and histroy of NDLEA. The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) was established by Decree 48 of January 1990 to eradicate the use of hard and illicit drugs in the country. The agency was put in place by the federal government of Nigeria at a time when there is a rise in the processing, manufacturing, selling, and trafficking of hard drugs. 

History Of NDLEA

With its head office sitting at Ikoyi in Lagos, The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency have trained officials and representatives at various seaports, international airports and borders across the country. The agency also has the mandate to hunt down leaders of narcotics organizations, as well as to engage in any activity that will control and manage the growing menace of illicit activities.

History Of NDLEA And Achievements

Achievements Of NDLEA { The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency }

Of course, it is true Nigeria is yet to be 100% free from the menace of illicit drug activities (just like many other countries in the world). However, if we are to be realistic, then it is glaring NDLEA had played a great role in reducing the rates of illicit drugs used in the country.

We can agree that prior to the establishment of the agency, drug offenders confidently go about with their illicit acts – but not anymore! The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) is always in the news about its activities that keeps bringing continual discomfort to drug offenders.

In Katsina State alone, in the pace of five months (January to May 2008), it was made known by the agency that up to one hundred people in the state were convicted for drug-related crimes, and that about 358 suspects were arrested for drug offences in that period of time.

In 2012, while signing a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with The United States Drug Enforcement Administration at the NDLEA headquarters in Lagos, the then chairman and chief executive of the agency Ahmadu Giade (a retired deputy commissioner of police) made it known that in 2006, the country recorded and seized 14,200 kg of cocaine at Tincan in Lagos. Ahmadu Giade said the seizure carried out by the agency was regarded as the largest cocaine seizure in the continent, and the fifth in the world.

Still On The Achievement Of NDLEA

In December 2015, NDLEA reported that they seized over 113,000 kilograms of cannabis Sativa that year. They also made it known that they confiscated 500 grammes of cocaine within the period and that 21 cannabis farmlands which covers 323 acres were destroyed.

The same year, the Jigawa command of the agency made it known that they have arrested over 230 suspected drug dealers between January and March in the state. They also said in that period, they were able to recover 122.229 kilograms of assorted illicit drugs in Jigawa State – worth over #2 Million.

Before the end of the year, the current chairman/chief executive of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency Col. Muhammad Mustapha Abdullah (Rtd.), said the agency has successfully arrested over 34,000 persons in connection with drug-related offenses across the country.

In 2017, officers of the agency were able to stop the attempts of two aged women – Adebayo Ebunoluwa and Amodu Ayisat – from exporting narcotic drugs to the United States and Saudi Arabia illegally. During the onward screening of passengers at the Murtala Mohammed international airport (MMIA) Lagos, Adebayo, who was on her way to New York, was found to have ingested 83 wraps of heroin weighing 1.1050 Kg. Amodu on the other hand, enroute Medina, ingested 25 wraps of cocaine.

In January 2018, the Osun state command of The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency also seized 272 kilograms of cannabis sativa, arresting one person in connection with it. The 272 KGS cannabis sativa were found at Ifewara Town in Alakanmosa East LG of Osun.

Challenges Faced By the national drug law enforcement agency

In 2016, the agency bemoaned some of the challenges it faces in prosecuting drug offenders. It was made known that the agency spends lots of time and money in procuring forensic experts to testify in court.

The agency said many Nigerian have a sympathetic attitude towards drug suspects and accused persons, and as such, it officials are hindered from doing proper jobs due to the undue pressure they face from the public.

It was also made known that the agency’s representatives are threatened on numerous occasions by big barons and their gang and that even the courts are not helping matters at all.

NDLEA complained that since drug cases can only be tried in federal courts, they usually face issues like congestion and bringing in witnesses on a regular basis. It was also said that judges keeps giving low sentences as well as options of fine to offenders – even when the law didn’t give room for such.


Close Works With The United States Of America

Since Nigerians are constantly traveling to the USA in large numbers, the North American country has donated full-body scanning machines to Nigeria’s international airports in Kano, Abuja, Lagos and Port Harcourt. The machines have been used to catch drug smugglers on different occasions, and it was reported that between 2006 and 2008 alone, over 12,500 suspected culprits were arrested.

The United States has additionally provided security training and orientation for those working in the country’s airports, and by working closely with NDLEA, lots of drug dealers have been hindered from traveling out of the country with cocaines and heroin.

For instance, in July 2009, an elderly woman who swallowed 42 wraps of cocaine (weighing 585 grams)  was caught at the Mallam Aminu Kano International Airport by the agency’s officers. And some months later, another Guinean woman was caught at the Murtala Mohammed International Airport Lagos, with 6.550 kg of cocaine.

In 2008, USA certified Nigeria for the eight successive time in her fight against illicit drugs. The country’s then president, George Bush, heaped lots of praise on the West African country for her progress in countering narcotics. Bush was delighted that the African giants had been co-operating with the USA on drug-related cases.

Amid NDLEA’s flaws, it is glaring the agency keeps maintaining sanity in the country in regards to drug abuse.

That’s all about The history of NDLEA and its achievements.


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