Paul Arkwright, British High Commissioner to Nigeria has expressed happiness with the level of cooperation between Nigeria and the United Kingdom in combating illicit drug trafficking. The High Commissioner speaking during a visit to the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency, NDLEA, noted that the Agency had demonstrated enormous responsibility in ensuring that the cross border drug control measures put in place are not only effective but efficient and have placed both Nigeria and UK on the position of strength in combating drug trafficking.
2. The British High Commissioner was full of commendation noting “I am happy with the efforts of National Drug Law Enforcement Agency and the cooperation of your team. Thank you for all your efforts across borders which has yielded tremendous results”.
3. He urged the Agency to sustain the strong relationship, adding “we have seen strong results and these have to continue”. According to him, the UK has invested heavily and will continue to do so in the collaboration with NDLEA and any obstacle to existing smooth relationship must be mitigated.
4. Chairman/Chief Executive, NDLEA, Col. Muhammad Mustapha Abdallah (rtd.) while responding to the High Commissioner, acknowledged the contribution of the British Government to “the operational life and function of NDLEA”. “I have maintained on several occasions that without the support of British and United States’ Governments, I would not know where we would have been in relation to the drug scourge”.
5. He noted that the British Government has been supportive in the areas of training, equipment and exchange of intelligence. “We will not give up. You have showed us the road. We cannot come worse than you have left us”, Abdallah assured.
6. The visit of the British High Commissioner is towards perfecting a Memorandum of Understanding, MoU between NDLEA and the United Kingdom Border Force (UKBF) and National Crime Agency (NCA) to further enhance the existing cooperation through the provision of technical assistance, training, equipment and the sharing and exchanging of information to combat cross border criminality.
7. Part of the British Government assistance is an ultra-modern office complex built for NDLEA Murtala Muhammed International Airport Special Area Command. The office will soon be commissioned.
Jonah Achema, ACN
Principal Staff Officer, Public Affairs