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NAFDAC Officers Attacked by Drug Peddlers in Abuja

Enforcement team and journalists escape mob violence during raid

by Victor Adetimilehin

The National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) has reported an attack on its enforcement team and journalists by drug peddlers and touts in Abuja, Nigeria’s capital city.

NAFDAC Raids Fake Drug Market

The incident occurred on Monday, when the NAFDAC Investigation and Enforcement Directorate, accompanied by mobile police officers, raided a fake, unregistered, and counterfeit drug market at the Area One motor park.

According to Umar Suleiman, the Assistant Chief Regulatory Officer of the Federal Task Force, the raid was based on intelligence from the Department of State Security on the activities of drug hawkers at the park.

He said the team confiscated some controlled drugs such as Rohypnol, Dizapam, Tramadol, Cocodamol, and aphrodisiac, among others, worth about N5 million.

Drug Hawkers Fight Back

However, as the enforcement exercise was ongoing, the drug hawkers and touts at the park became violent and started throwing stones and other dangerous objects at the team and journalists. They also vandalized two of the vehicles belonging to NAFDAC.

Suleiman said the attack was a normal thing for them in the investigation and enforcement department, and that was why they always went with armed police officers in case of any arrest.

He said the mobile police had to fire tear gas and gunshots into the air to disperse the attackers and allow the team and journalists to escape.

NAFDAC Vows to Continue Fight Against Fake Drugs

Suleiman said the team would reinforce and return to the park to complete the operation.

He said NAFDAC was committed to ensuring the safety and quality of food and drugs in the country, and would not relent in its efforts to rid the nation of fake and substandard products. He also urged the public to be vigilant and report suspicious activities or products to the agency.

Suleiman said NAFDAC had a toll-free number, 0800-1-NAFDAC, and a website, www.nafdac.gov.ng, where people could lodge their complaints or inquire.

He said NAFDAC would continue to work with other security agencies and stakeholders to protect the health and well-being of Nigerians.

Source: Punch

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