The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency says it is pushing the red alert at seaports because illicit drugs mostly come in through the seaport.
The Chief Executive Officer of NDLEA, Brig-Gen. Mohammed Marwa (rtd.), said this when he hosted the Nigerian Shippers Council, led by the Executive Secretary, Hassan Bello, in Abuja.
Marwa reiterated that under him, NDLEA would move with greater efficiency, even as the two agencies agreed to collaborate to rid Nigerian ports of criminality and remove operational bottlenecks and corruption.
He commended NSC for the bold steps taken to modernise ports operations.
“In the era of round-the-clock operations, your digitalisation of activities at the ports is commendable. I would like to assure you that we at NDLEA are committed to Ease of Doing Business.
“This can be appreciated from our last seizure of 43 kilogrammes of cocaine in a ship, which berthed at Tin Can Island Port and the promptness of our subsequent actions after due diligence,” he said.
The former military administrator of Lagos State noted that NDLEA’s mandate was to prevent and detect drug crimes. “Most other criminalities, be it terrorism or kidnapping, are traceable to drug abuse,” he added.
In his speech, Bello said the recent appointment of Marwa inspired confidence in the NDLEA operations.
He asserted that the growing need to promote transparency and eliminate bottlenecks at the port inspired the synergy.
His words, “There is no better time than now for NSC and NDLEA to forge this synergy because of the growing need to promote transparency, accountability, ensuring predictability and eliminate bottlenecks.
“Our operational efficiency at the nation’s seaports will impact the ranking of Nigeria in the Corruption Perception Index of Transparency International.”
Stressing that the onerous task of NDLEA is recognised by NSC, he sought collaboration between the counter-narcotic agency and other agencies operating at the ports to curtail disjointed operations.