The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) has arrested 16 suspected illicit drug dealers and users at the premises of the All Progressives Congress (APC) headquarters in Dutse, the Jigawa state capital.
NDLEA’s Deputy Controller in charge of Operation and Intelligence, Mr. Oko Michael, confirmed the arrest to reporters on Monday.
He explained that the raid, which was carried out by NDLEA operatives on Sunday evening, followed several complaints of the activities of drug users at the party’s office.
According to Michael, the suspects were arrested at the premises and inside the APC’s state secretariat over the weekend.
He added that three of the suspects would be charged to court on Tuesday to serve as a deterrent to others with similar motives.
The NDLEA deputy controller disclosed that among those to be arraigned was a woman who has a kiosk at the premises of the party’s secretariat where many substances were found in her possession.
He declared that even though some suspected drug users fled into offices during the raid, the operatives were able to arrest some suspects in the middle of their illicit businesses.
In his reaction, the spokesperson for the APC in Jigawa, Mr. Nasiru Jahun, confirmed that the arrest was in order.
He, however, refuted that the NDLEA operation was conducted inside the APC office, rather around the building which was patronized by all members of the society and not only APC supporters.
“Even though we supported NDLEA in flushing out illicit drug users across the state, there is no clear indication that those arrested were members of the APC, although they were arrested near our Headquarters,” Jahun said.
He noted that the APC secretariat is not a sacred place and the NDLEA can perform their constitutional duty, even inside a mosque or church.