Nigeria Partners India To Combat Illicit Drug Flow

The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) and the Narcotics Control Bureau of India (NCB) have agreed to collaborate to block the traffic of illicit drugs between Nigeria and India.

The Director of Media and Advocacy, NDLEA, Mr Femi Babafemi, said in a statement that the two agencies signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on Wednesday in Abuja.

He said the Chairman of NDLEA, retired Brig.-Gen. Buba Marwa, who signed the MoU on behalf of the agency, said the move represented a robust partnership in efforts to exterminate incidences of drug abuse and illicit drug trafficking in the two countries.

He said, “This bold step taken by the two agencies is an affirmation of our foresight and commitment to the task of ensuring the safety of our citizens and the global community at large.”

According to him, the MOU constitutes a fundamental step towards positioning the two countries, India and Nigeria, at the forefront of confronting and dismantling transnational drug trafficking networks.

Marwa said the governments of both countries remained committed to eradicating the problem posed by illicit substances, notably synthetic opioids and Amphetamine Type Stimulants (ATS) which posed a potent threat to the citizens.

He acknowledged the courage exhibited by the two agencies in the course of past meetings that culminated in the MoU.

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The NDLEA boss stressed that the partnership would impact greatly efforts to prevent illicit trafficking in narcotic drugs, psychotropic substances, precursor chemicals and related matters between the two countries.

The Indian High Commissioner to Nigeria and Head of the Indian delegation, Ambassador Shri Balasubramanian, signed on behalf of his country.

Balasubramanian said the negative impact of drugs on global financial and political systems was enormous, and that proceeds of drug trafficking were often directed towards terrorism financing.

The Indian high commissioner observed that drug trafficking did not only affect the health of the individual that consumed it but equally the economy of the country as well as national security.

He advised that both countries should take advantage of their similar demographic advantage to address substance use problems.

He added that the liberal trade relations and educational advantages enjoyed by both countries had been negatively applied to further criminal drug trade.

“I urge that all hands must be on deck to ensure that merchants of death do not succeed in their evil trade,” he said.

Balasubramanian pledged the commitment of the Indian government to ensure the enforcement of the provisions of the MoU.