Officials of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMIA) Lagos have arrested a middle-aged woman, Dorothy Onyekasi, for faking pregnancy with 86 pellets of a substance suspected to be cocaine.
Dorothy, a mother of three, was arrested during the inward screening of passengers on an Emirates Airlines flight from Dubai, United Arab Emirates (UAE). The substance found on her has an aggregate weight of 1.720kg and an estimated street value of N20.6 million naira.
Chairperson of NDLEA, Col. Muhammad Mustapha Abdallah (rtd,) described recent drug seizures at the MMIA as a constituting a signal to drug cartels to retreat.
"In the past few days, the NDLEA has recorded numerous arrests and drug seizures at the Lagos airport.
"The drug cartels have also suffered huge losses from these operations. "This particular suspect feigned pregnancy with wraps of cocaine, but she was caught by vigilant narcotic agents.
"Some of the suspects recently apprehended concealed drugs in their socks and luggage, while others ingested wraps of cocaine.
"In spite of their craftiness, we are daily stopping them from perpetrating their criminal acts and forcing them into a retreat," said Abdallah.
NDLEA commander at MMIA, Ahmadu Garba, said the wraps of cocaine could easily have been mistaken for pregnancy. "The suspect kept 86 wraps of cocaine inside a waist bag which was tied to her stomach. The drug was detected by NDLEA officers on her arrival from Dubai. The drug was immediately packed and weighed in her presence. It had a gross weight of 1.720kgs" he stated.
The forty-one-year-old woman, who is an importer of female bags and shoes from Dubai, admitted that her involvement in drug trafficking was a mistake, for which she is solely responsible. "I am a business woman living in Lagos. I am separated from my husband who left me with three children. I import female bags and shoes from Dubai. My involvement in drug trafficking is a mistake, and I take responsibility for my action. I travelled to Dubai to buy goods. While I was preparing to return, I met a man in Dubai who gave me the drug and promised to give me enough money to expand my business. He also told me that when I get to Nigeria, he will call his partner to collect the drug and give me my money. When I got here, the drug was detected at the airport, and I was arrested. It is all my fault. If only I were contented with the profit from the sales of my goods, I would not have been in this problem," she said ruefully.
Dorothy, who hails from Enugu State, is a Junior Secondary School certificate holder.
She will be charged to court soon.