No fewer than 123 suspected drug dealers have been arrested by the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) in Bayelsa State.
According to the Bayelsa State command of the agency, illicit drugs weighing 81.95 kilogrammes were also confiscated from suspects in the state.
This was disclosed by the NDLEA Commander in the state, Abdullahi Abdul, during a press conference at the agency’s secretariat in Yenagoa.
Abdul, who said the arrests and seizures were carried out between January and June 2017, noted that 85 males and 38 females arrested were.
According to him, a breakdown of the seizures indicated that cannabis was 74.615 kg, cocaine – 0.011kg, heroin – 0.059kg, and psychotropic drug – 7.265kg.
The commandant revealed that during the period under review, they were able to convict three drug suspects – one male and two females – with various prison terms ranging from 18 to 20 months.
He added that another seven suspects – two females and five males – were being remanded in prison custody for various drug trafficking offences.
Abdul lamented that the major handicap of the Command was logistics that would enable the NDLEA to cover all the nooks and crannies of the state, particularly the coastal areas and the hinterland.
The commandant, however, said that the agency was working assiduously with the Bayelsa State government to facilitate their operations in every part of the state.
He said: “In Bayelsa State, the major thing that worries us here is the use of psychotropic substances which are mostly abused by youths. We are trying our best to curtail the usage of these substances and within the last six months, we were able to arrest 123 suspects.
“We were able to counsel a total of 41 suspects, while five chronic drug users were completely rehabilitated by the Drug Demand Addiction Unit of the command. In the process of the counseling, we involved medical doctors and other medical personnel to ensure full rehabilitation.
”Drug abuse is an issue that concerns everybody in the society, we need to work together to make the society safe for everyone.”