A Nigerian businesswoman heading to Jeddah, Saudi Arabia for Umrah (lesser hajj) has been arrested by operatives of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, NAIA, Abuja for ingesting 80 pellets of cocaine.
Mrs. Adisa Afusat Olayinka, a 46-year-old who lives in Ibafo, Ogun State, was arrested on Wednesday, 24 November, at the boarding screening area of the airport during an outward clearance of Qatar Airways flight 1418, according to a statement issued by Femi Babafemi, NDLEA’s Director of Media and Advocacy, on Monday.
Olayinka, who hails from Ilorin, in Ilorin East Local Government Area of Kwara State was subsequently taken into custody where she excreted 80 pellets of the illicit drug between 24 November and Saturday, 27th November.
According to the statement, the suspect claimed during interviews that she saved N2.5 million over a period of one year to buy the drugs in bits from six different people at Akala, in the Mushin area of Lagos. She said she was trading in clothes but had to borrow N1 million from three persons to make up the money used to buy the drugs, adding that she spent another N1million to renew her passport, visa and buy return flight tickets.
Olayinka said she was encouraged to traffic the drugs by a woman she met during her last Umrah trip to Saudi Arabia in 2019. She added that she needed to raise N7 million for In Vitro fertilization (IVF) treatment due to pressure from people because she’s been married for 28 years without a child due to fertility challenges.
Meanwhile, another suspected trafficker, Inusa Abdulrazaki was arrested with 101 wraps of heroin weighing 1.3 kilograms on Friday, 19 November, at Gate C -Departure hall of the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Ikeja, Lagos, while on his way to Italy via Istanbul on Turkish Airlines.
The drugs were concealed inside cassava flour, popularly called gari. The following day, NDLEA operatives at the airport during a routine cargo search at NAHCO export shed intercepted an abandoned consignment of khat 17.90kg.
While commending the officers and men of the NAIA and MMIA commands for their vigilance and steadfastness, Chairman/Chief Executive of NDLEA, Brigadier-General Mohamed Buba Marwa (retd.) urged them to always stay two steps ahead of the drug cartels.