A cannabis village has been uncovered in Owan West local government area of Edo state by the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA).
Buba Wakawa, NDLEA commander in Edo, disclosed this on Sunday in Benin, the state capital, TheCable reports.
He said the command arrested seven drug barons operating four large warehouses in Ukpuje forest in Owan West.
Wakawa said the four warehouses had a total of 16, 344 bags of cannabis and weeds, weighing 233, 778kg, which were seized in addition to two pump action and one double barrel guns.
The commander said the estimated street value of the seized illicit drug is put at over N1.4billion.
He said seven suspects were arrested and taken into NDLEA custody. He gave their names as; Emmanuel Oki, 62, who is the chairman of the vigilante group in Ukpuje; Odi Sabato, 42, and Bright Inemi Edegbe, 53.
Others are Gowon Ehimigbai, 53; Enodi Ode, 37; Ayo Oni, 30 and Akhime Benjamin, 43.
According to Wakawa, the arrest is the largest single concentration of cannabis discovered by the command.
He gave the breakdown of the drugs as follows: 318 bags of 80kg each weighing 25,440kg; 15,853 bags of 13kg weighing 206,089kg. However, while the total quantity seized is 2,249kg, others weighing 231,529kg were destroyed inside the warehouses.
The commander attributed the successful operation to the support of Buba Marwa, NDLEA chairman.
“We took delivery of two new Hilux operational vehicles presented to the command last week. This is the first assignment of the vehicles and it turned out to be the best for the command. We are grateful to the chairman, and this is a clear warning that there is no room for drug barons in the state,” he said.
Reacting in a statement on Sunday, Marwa said his administration will smoke out drug dealers from their hiding places.
He warned drug barons to put an end to their illegal activities, adding that “the heat is on”.
“I remember I made it clear in my inaugural remarks upon assumption of duty on January 18, while sounding a note of warning to those involved in this illicit trade to either back out or have the NDLEA to contend with because our maxim must and will remain offensive action; to smoke the drug barons and traffickers out of their holes, forests and bunkers,” he said.
“The heat is on and we will continue to increase the furnace until we smoke them out of their hiding places to face the law.”
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