The Commander of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency in Ebonyi State, Raphael Igwenagu, on Saturday said the agency has secured 70 convictions in the state in 2014.
Igwenagu told the News Agency of Nigeria in Abakaliki that the command also seized 1.6 tons of drugs within the period under review.
According to him, the 70 convictions was the highest level of conviction ever secured since the inception of the command.
He said: “I commend the effectiveness, commitment and the precision handling of drug related cases by the judiciary in Ebonyi.
“Political activities often results in youths being used as thugs to consume hard drugs which gives them false strength to perpetrate violence.”
Igwenaagu recalled that the agency had secured the conviction of 25 persons in 2013 and seized 520 kilogrammes of drugs, while in 2012, 300 kilogrammes of drugs were seized in the state.
He described the volume of seizure in 2014 as unprecedented, attributing it to the resumption of political activities and the more aggressive strategies adopted by various enforcement agencies in the state.
Igwenagu said the agency would intensify efforts in 2015 to prevent and control the use of hard drugs by youths across the state.
He said: “We would also enhance activities in public enlightenment to inform the general public, especially the youths, on the inherent dangers of hard drug consumption and peddling.
“This is essential because public enlightenment is key to our operations.
“It helps to educate them on the consequences of hard drug consumption or peddling and to prevent the public from venturing into it.”
The Ebonyi NDLEA commander appealed to the Federal Government for more funds and logistics to enable the agency perform more creditably.