NDLEA quizzes four NAHCO workers over drug trafficking

Afeez Hanafi

Four employees of the Nigerian Aviation Handling Company Plc have been quizzed by the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency for their alleged involvement in a botched exportation of 144 kilogrammes of ephedrine to Maputo, Mozambique.

PUNCH Metro learnt that the suspects are the Chief Security Supervisor of NAHCO, Audu Garba, two security officers, Nasiru Ibrahim and Haruna Abdullahi, as well as a driver, Adamu Dasura.

It was learnt that one Victor Ahenje, a Load Controller, who was said to be on the run, has been declared wanted.

The suspects were alleged to have aided drug traffickers to hide the drug inside noodles and cartons containing relaxers and cereals.

The drug, was however, intercepted by the NDLEA operatives at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja, during the outward screening of shipment to be transported via an Ethiopian airline flight on Monday.

The NDLEA commander at the Abuja airport, Mr. Hamisu Lawan, said the NAHCO officials worked at the cargo section of the airport and were currently being quizzed by investigators.

 “We have commenced the interrogation of the workers of NAHCO in connection with the attempt to export 144kg of ephedrine to Maputo, Mozambique. Preliminary investigation suggests flagrant lapses on the part of NAHCO security. So far, they are cooperating with our team of investigators,” Hamisu added.

The NDLEA Chairman, Col. Muhammad Abdallah (retd.) called for proper scrutiny of airport staff to prevent acts of sabotage and compromise capable of undermining national security.

He said, “This is a suspected case of conspiracy involving workers within the airport community. The agency is investigating the level of involvement of the suspects under interrogation and anyone indicted shall be prosecuted.”

Abdallah added that efforts were ongoing to arrest Ahenje, who hails from Benue State, and called on members of the public to avail the agency with useful information that could lead to his arrest.

When contacted a NAHCO official, who did not want his name in print because he was not authorised to speak on the case, directed our correspondent to the Managing Director, Mr. Nobert Bielderman.

The MD had yet to reply to an email sent to him as of press time.

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