The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, retired Big.-Gen. Mohamed Buba Marwa said in Abuja on Tuesday that the agency in partnership with a para-military outfit was set to inflict maximum loss on drug cartels bent on trafficking illicit drugs in the country.
To this end, NDLEA and the Nigerian Customs Service (NCS) are to collaborate towards strengthening operations and synergizing to combat criminal elements in the country.
Marwa disclosed this at the signing of Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Comptroller-General of the Nigerian Customs Service (NCS), retired Col. Hameed Ali in his office.
He said: “This certainly is a benchmark for information and or intelligence sharing , it is also a platform for sharing of operational and administrative experience with a view to adopting best practices that work.
“With this united front there can only be one assurance that the criminal elements in our society will be the losers and I assure you that they will certainly lose big as we come for them to put them where they rightly belong and cripple their crime syndicate.
“While there is no doubt as to the benefits that this MoU will provide to our two services and the nation at large , it is my hope that its successful execution and implementation will provide the necessary impetus for extension to other sister law enforcement agencies (LEAs) operating at our airports, seaports and land borders.
“On this basis, it is imperative to drive the implementation of the MoU to ensure that it objectives and derivable are achieved.”
Marwa also pointed out that there is provision for joint training of personnel in the MoU.
“It provides for joint training of personnel just as it makes provision for regular meetings of command officers at various levels of our command structures.”
In his speech, Ali expressed the hope that the collaboration will send a strong signal to criminals and facilitate the eradication of drugs and other harmful substances.
He said: “This MoU is sending a very strong signal to fighting crime, we believe that coming together shows commitment to saving this nation from drugs and other substances.
“I want to take this special opportunity to thank my senior for initiating this MoU.”
He also commended Marwa for the giant strides he has recorded since taking over at NDLEA.
“He is a committed person; it is not new to us in the uniform service to see his strides. For those who have had the opportunity to serve with him he is a game player and a game changer.
“I want to reiterate that our coming together does not send a signal only to our nation but to the International partners that we are committed to protecting our borders from illicit drugs.
“Both of us must ensure we deploy technology as we go into this commitment to fighting the drug menace.
“It is the key to successnas methods of concealment are numerous with other illicit drugs put in pockets, shoes and edible foods,” Ali said.