NDLEA nabs Grandma over attempt to smuggle cocaine to Saudi Arabia

NDLEA nabs Grandma over attempt to smuggle cocaine to Saudi Arabia
A 57 year-old grandmother, and textile merchant at Balogun market in Lagos, Odeyemi Omolara Morayo has been caught in connection with cocaine smuggling to Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.

She was arrested at the Murtala Mohammed International Airport, Lagos on Saturday while attempting to board an Egypt Air flight.

 The suspect was believed to be embarking  on lesser hajj when she was caught with the substance weighing 1.595kg.

NDLEA commander at the Lagos airport, Ahmadu Garba explained that the two parcels of white powdery substance that tested positive for cocaine were carefully concealed inside her luggage.

“The cocaine which was concealed in a false bottom  of  her bag was discovered during routine check on passengers at the departure hall. We had to cut the bag open to recover the cocaine because of the way it was neatly concealed. She was immediately arrested and the case is currently under investigation”, Garba was quoted in a statement by NDLEA spokesman Ofoyeju Mitchell.

The suspect, an indigene of Ogun State, reportedly told investigators that her friend and customer introduced her to drug trafficking. 

Omolara said, “I am a textile merchant at Balogun market, Lagos. I have two children and my daughter is married with children. Recently, I told my friend that I loved to go on pilgrimage this year and she promised to sponsor my trip. That was how she collected my international passport, processed my travel documents and bought return ticket on Egypt airline.

“The only favour she requested from me was that I should take a bag to Saudi. She also told me that somebody will collect the bag from me at Jeddah. It was an empty bag so I kept my personal effects inside it. On getting to the airport, officers discovered cocaine inside the bag during search and I was arrested” Omolara stated. 

Chairman/Chief Executive of the NDLEA, Col Muhammad Mustapha Abdallah described the suspect’s action as condemnable, saying the agency had saved her from execution as drug trafficking attracts capital punishment in Saudi.

“Apart from saving her from execution in Saudi, the prompt arrest also protected our country from disrepute. The Agency will not relent in the fight against illicit drug production, trafficking and abuse” Abdallah said.

The arrest came few days after Justice B.O. Quadri of the Federal High Court Abuja sentenced a 55-year old female pilgrim Binuyo Basirat Iyabo to 10 years imprisonment with hard labour after being caught last September for smuggling 76 pellets of cocaine weighing 931 grammes to Medina, Saudi Arabia. 

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