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N567m Drug Heist: NDLEA Nabs Drug Baron in Lagos Hotel

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Operatives of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency on Thursday arrested a drug baron, Charles Ezeh, following the recovery of a consignment of methamphetamine weighing 30.10kg with a street value of N567m.

The illicit drug consignment concealed in powdered custard containers as part of a consolidated cargo going to London, United Kingdom, was intercepted at the Skyway Aviation Handling Company Plc export shed of the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Ikeja Lagos, on Tuesday

The spokesperson for the agency, Femi Babafemi, revealed this in a statement made available to journalists on Sunday.

Babafemi said the interception was followed by a series of follow-up operations that led to the arrest of a freight agent, Nwobodo Chidiebere, a female suspect, Chioma Akuta, and ultimately the drug lord behind the shipment, Ezeh, who was arrested at Sotel Suites, Amuwo Odofin, Lagos.

Babafemi said, “Ezeh claims he is a businessman and deals in articles in Onitsha, Anambra State, but investigation revealed that he lived with his wife and children in London until December 10, 2022, when he fled to Nigeria after his involvement in a drug-related offence in the UK.

“Though he claimed to have been living in hotels since his return to Nigeria last December, operatives were, however, able to locate his mansion at No. 1, Hawawu Abikan Street, Lekki, on Friday, May 19, where a search was conducted and his travel and property documents among others were recovered.”

Meanwhile, NDLEA operatives in Adamawa on May 15, arrested a 32-year-old notorious drug dealer, Ikechukwu Uzoma, in the Mubi area of the state, with 1kg of skunk.

Babafemi noted that Ikechukwu had twice been arrested in the past, and convicted for the same offence, and he was in 2017 sentenced to six months imprisonment and in 2019, was again sent to two years in jail.

“In the same vein, a trans-border trafficker, Faisal Mohammed, 27, was on Wednesday, May 17, arrested in Mubi following the interception of a truck from Onitsha, Anambra State, where a total of 2,376 sachets of tramadol comprising 23,760 pills were found concealed in three blue rubber Jerrycans which were hidden underneath the body part of the trailer. The suspect admitted the opioid was to be taken to Cameroon,” he added.

In Oyo State, two suspects, Osas Susan, 35, and Thomas Biodun, 23, were arrested at Igbon, Gambari in the Ogbomoso North Local Government Area with 2.13kg cannabis while Idris Muhammed, 55, was nabbed with 4,500 pills of tramadol when a commercial bus conveying him and other passengers was stopped and searched along Lagos-Ibadan expressway.

Similarly, Bulus Mikah, 63, was arrested at Kafanchan, Kaduna state with over 5kg opioids including tramadol, diazepam, rohypnol and exol-5, just as a total of 965kg cannabis was seized from Shehu Muhammadu Dandare, 25, at Maraban Jos, in Igabi local government area of the state.

Babafemi further noted that, while 552kg cannabis was recovered from a warehouse in a bush when operatives stormed and destroyed 1.5 hectares of cannabis farm in Uhodoua forest, the Esan South-East Local Government Area of Edo State, 10 suspects were arrested with a total of 5.587kg cannabis sativa, 144.4grams of methamphetamine and 48, 260 capsules of tramadol in different parts of Onitsha, Anambra State on Friday, May 19.

He added, “In Kwara, two suspects Mohammed Isa, 47 and Mohammed Haman, 36, were arrested on Friday, May 19, along Ilorin-Lagos road in a commercial bus on their way to Maiduguri, Borno State with 6kg cannabis, 50grams of methamphetamine and 20 pieces of military camouflage caps and uniforms.

“The same day, operatives in Jigawa state nabbed one Ibrahim Abdullahi, 53, with 120kg cannabis at Sara town in Gwaram LGA.

“Not less than 628 bottles of new psychoactive substance, skuchies was recovered when operatives raided a drug joint at Idanre where four suspects were arrested. The suspects include Olamide Olusola, 26, Abiodun Tijjani, 21, Fatope Temidayo, 29, Agba Obi, 30, and Olafisoye Festus, 26.

“In the same vein, a suspect, Kayode Hakeem, 22, was arrested at Hawan Dawaki, Kano with 293 blocks of cannabis weighing 211.6kg.”

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Man Dies Watching Television in Drinking Bar – Police Confirm

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The Lagos State Police Command has confirmed the sudden death of a yet to be identified man, who reportedly came to watch television at a beer parlour in the state.

The Command’s Public Relations Officer, SP Benjamin Hundeyin, confirmed this in a statement on Saturday.

Hundeyin said that the owner of the beer parlour, whose name was not mentioned, reported the case to Elere Police Division on Wednesday at about 7.00 p.m.

He said that the report revealed that a customer (now deceased), whose name and address were yet unknown, in his 50s, came to the beer parlour located along Lagos-Abeokuta Expressway at about 6.15 p.m.

The statement quoted the bar owner as saying thatthe customer walked into the open bar to sit and watch television.

The statement read in part:

“He was later observed to be sleeping on the chair and there was an attempt to wake him up, but they discovered that he was lifeless.

“The scene was visited by detectives of the division and the body was seen lifeless on the chair without any mark of violence.

“The body has been removed to Mainland General Hospital Mortuary Yaba, Lagos for autopsy. Efforts to trace his family is in progress.”

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Lagos Govt Warns Schools, Teachers Against Extension Classes, Fee-Paying Tutorials for Students

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The Lagos State government has issued a stern warning to teachers and schools against extending official hours for fee-paying extra lessons.

This directive was announced by the Commissioner for Basic and Secondary Education, Jamiu Tolani Alli-Balogun, during the unveiling of a block of classrooms and furniture at Amuwo Odofin Junior High School complex.

Alli-Balogun emphasized that the extra hour after the official closing time – typically used for paid lessons – ought to be for extracurricular activities. The activities, the commissioner said, include clubs such as the Red Cross, Red Crescent, Boys Scouts, Boys/Girls Brigade, STEM Club, Writing and Debate Club, are essential for the well-rounded development of students.

Expressing his disapproval of the practice where the first lesson of the day is often neglected by teachers, Alli-Balogun warned that any teacher found derelict in their duties would face strict consequences.

“Do your job at the right time between 8.00am and 2.00pm and leave the extra hour for reading or extracurricular activities.

“We will no longer condone using that time for fee-paying extra lessons in our schools. Education is free in Lagos State, and nobody should be charging any fee for anything,” he warned.

The commissioner made these remarks during the inauguration of new classroom facilities and furniture at the Amuwo-Odofin Junior High School Complex, a project sponsored by Grimaldi Group and Ports & Terminal Multiservices Ltd.

He urged students to fully engage in the various social activities and clubs available to ensure their holistic development.

Alli-Balogun’s stern message underscores the government’s commitment to free education and the importance of extracurricular activities in fostering a balanced educational environment.

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Declare State of Emergency on Power Sector Now, Barth Nnaji Tells FG

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By Morakinyo Ajibade

Chairman, Geometric Power Limited, and former Minister of Power, Prof. Bartholomew Nnaji, has said that only a state of emergency on the power and gas sector will restore the comatose energy and electricity crisis in the nation.

The former Minister, who just commissioned a power station in Aba, Abia State, made this call while speaking as a guest lecturer at the inaugural Dele Momodu Leadership Lecture, held at the Nigerian Institute of International and Affairs (NIIA) in Lagos.

According to him, a state of emergency needs to be declared in the gas sector as this declaration will save the power sector and allow the government and other stakeholders to address fundamental issues in the gas sector in a robust manner.

“The issues will include how to strike a healthy balance between producing gas for export and gas for domestic consumption. Gas is equally needed in both markets.

“There is not enough natural gas or even liquefied petroleum gas used in the kitchen. Even the Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas company, a major foreign exchange earner that also has a guaranteed market, has been operating at 60% capacity on account of insufficient gas supply.

“The petroleum companies supplying gas to power-generating companies are in a tighter position. Because they are performing sub-optimally, there are now longer periods of electricity blackouts throughout the country. This is despite the spirited efforts of the NNPCL, the Ministry of Power and the Presidency,” he said.

The event, which attracted the who’s who in the nation’s political and economic climate, was held to mark the 64th birthday of Aare Dele Momodu, a veteran and seasoned journalist, who has dedicated most of his life time in the pursuit of equity and food governance in Nigeria.

Among dignitaries that graced the all important gathering were the former President of the Republic of Ghana, Dr. John Dramani Mahama; Ooni of Ife, Oba Enitan Adeyeye Ogunwusi; Osun State Governor, Senator Ademola Adeleke; former governor of Anambra State, Mr. Peter Obi, former governor of Kano State, Senator Rabiu Kwankwaso; traditional rulers, captains of industries, and the general public.

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