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The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) and the Lagos State government have begun partnership to ensure total eradication of illegal methamphetamine production plants in Lagos.
Governor of Lagos State, Mr. Babatunde Raji Fashola (SAN) while receiving the NDLEA boss, Alhaji Ahmadu Giade in his office at Alausa, promised to work with the anti-drug agency to stem the tide, saying that drug control “is the first line of defence against insecurity and crime.”
“The new discovery of clandestine laboratories for methamphetamine production in Lagos is the first alarm of insecurity in the state,” Fashola said.
The governor noted that emphasis should be placed on adequate funding of critical security agencies such as NDLEA.
According to him: “There is a need to prioritize the defence and protection of the over 4,000 borders in the country.
“Since crimes such as armed robbery, rape and others are often committed under the influence of drugs, we must first fight drugs in order to fight crime.
“At this time of high security challenges, drug control should be a high priority issue. Every society that wants to promote peace and security must fight drugs”.
Winning strategies to addressing the spread of the factories, according to NDLEA boss, Giade included public enlightenment and social mobilization aimed at sensitizing members of the public on the dangers and challenges of clandestine laboratories.
It would also provide safety tips, encourage community vigilance and ultimately prevent the spread of these dangerous factories.
“Other strategies are scientific testing of soil and water in areas where Illegal drug manufacturing factories were discovered in the state. This will enhance the assessment of the environmental impact of the waste generated by the illegal factories and seek ways to arrest the ugly development,” he said.
The NDLEA boss who further warned on the proliferation of Clandestine Laboratories for the manufacture of methamphetamine, stressed the need for collaboration against drug cartels.
In his words: “Methamphetamine is fast becoming the choice of drug barons due to its increasing demand and rising value in other continents. This is a catalyst for the proliferation of Clandestine Laboratories and we need to collaborate to check the ugly trend”.
Giade noted that safety of lives and property is threatened when drugs are produced and trafficked.
His words: “Money in hands of criminal gangs exposes the state to the associated risk of terrorism financing, money laundering, political violence and murder. “There is also the threat of creating local market for the drug thus increasing the number of drug addicts”.
The agency in the past two years had discovered five laboratories with four located in Lagos. The four discovered laboratories were operating in Monkey Village, Iba area, Daily Times Estate Satellite town, Silver Estate, Isolo and Lekki. The fifth one was discovered in Nanka village in Anambra State. These are the first known cases of such laboratories in the entire West African sub-region.