Some officers of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) have written a petition to the Presidency, accusing its Chairman of not performing up to expectation.
The aggrieved officers, who lamented that they had lost 58 officers between 2016 and 2018, also alleged that the number of impounded illicit drugs reduced drastically within the same period, when compared to previous years.
The officers, however, attributed these to the poor leadership style and inefficiency of Muhammed Abdallah, the NDLEA Chairman, who they claimed cared less about the welfare of the staff.
A petition, which emanated from the agency’s office in Ikoyi, dated August 22, 2018 and addressed to President Muhammadu Buhari, but obtained by SaharaReporters, listed the names and ranks of the deceased officers.
The petition entitled: ‘Save the Soul of NDLEA from Oblivion’, was signed for the officers by one Musa Ahmed Yusuf and listed the names, ranks and the last commands of the dead officers, who they claimed died between 2016 and 2018.
The breakdown of the list, according to the petitioners, indicated that three Narcotics Assistants II; 13 Narcotics Agents, and three Senior Narcotics Agents died within the period.
Others are nine Chief Narcotics Agents; six Assistant Narcotics Superintendents; eight Deputy Narcotics Superintendents; nine Superintendents of Narcotics; six Chief Superintendent of Narcotics and one Assistant Commander of Narcotics.
Some of the commands included: Kaduna, Kwara, Lagos, Imo, Akwa Ibom, Plateau, Borno, Taraba, Delta, Yobe, Benue, Ogun, Bauchi, Sokoto, Gombe, Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Ondo, Nasarawa, Kebbi, Kogi, Ekiti, Osun, Adamawa, Rivers, Seme, Edo, Cross River and Abia.
The petitioners decried that none of the families of the dead officers had been paid their entitlements and benefits, years after they were killed during service.
The petitioners added: “Abdallah is one mistake too many. He is the only Chairman since inception that comes to work two or three times in a month and that is when allocation is released. This is horrible for an agency saddled with the very important function of drug control.
“The purported relocation of NDLEA headquarters from Lagos to Abuja by Abdallah is a big fraud. First, the Abuja office is yet to be furnished; the officers that moved to Abuja have not been given an allowance, and the Ikoyi office has suffered power cut for over two years.”
The petitioners further alleged that there had been sharp decline in the number of drugs seized since 2016, when Abdallah was given the mandate to lead the agency.
According to them, in 2015 the agency seized drugs weighing 903,624.56kg, but in 2016, it drastically plummeted to 263,947.57kg and 309.713kg in 2017.
They alleged that the strategy of lack of promotion, poor welfare and lack of running cost to state commands by Abdallah was a grand plan to stagnate officers, demoralise and make them unable to launch attacks on drug barons.
According to them, the agency’s activities had been reduced to just “petty raids on small-time cannabis dealers”.
The petition read: “The frenzy of clamping down on clandestine laboratories that produce methamphetamine, as well as the large quantity of cocaine and heroin seizures at the seaports is now history. Drug barons are celebrating a great season of boom under Abdallah.”
The concerned officers demanded immediate investigation into the Chairman’s activities within the past two years, especially the lack of promotion of officers; payment of overhead cost to commands since 2016; illegal and incessant foreign travels; non-payment of benefits to dead officers, and the tacit lack of attack on drug barons among others.