The NDLEA in Bayelsa state has confirmed the arrest of 59 drug dealers from various parts of the state.
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A statement issued on Monday, September 26, and signed by the spokesman for the command, Mr Osakwe Ikenna, revealed that the number of dealers arrested comprises of 12 females and 47 males.
Although the arrests led to the seizure of more than 98.902 kilogrammes of different types of hard drugs in circulation in the state, sadly, the arrests and seizures took place during the third quarter of 2016.
A Superintendent of Narcotics and Principal Staff Officer, Public Affairs, Ikenna, disclosed that some of the recovered drugs were gotten by the command's operatives on motorised patrol along the East-West Road, while others were gotten from within the state capital as well as other local government areas during raids carried out on notorious joints and the homes of drug dealers.
The spokesman said:
“This haul of seized drugs and arrests is just one of the measures to sound a note of warning to unrepentant drug dealers in the state to desist from this evil and sinister trade. The command is poised to locate and apprehend them (illicit drug dealers) wherever they may be hiding and carrying out their illegal and destructive trade”.
“Parents, relatives of drug dependent persons and even drug dependent persons, are hereby encouraged to avail themselves of the counselling and rehabilitation services available at the state command headquarters without fear of arrest. Drug dependence has been recognised the world over as a health issue requiring treatment rather than arrest and prosecution.”
Ikenna went on to plead with parents and guardians to gain knowledge on the various drug types as well as signs of their usage, which will equip them to identify possible drug usage amongst their kids and wards.
According to Ikenna, this knowledge will facilitate early intervention from the right sources. He also advised that the words and thoughts of their children should be taken seriously, so as to know when they are crying for help.
”It is trite that there can be no manner of crime perpetrated in the society without the involvement of illicit drugs. Consequently, to achieve a peaceful, crime-free and economically viable society, all organisations and individuals must see themselves as stakeholders and contribute to making the state drug free,” the spokesman encouraged.