Operatives of the Lagos State Environmental and Special Offences Unit at the weekend raided streets within Lagos Central Business District (CBD), including surroundings of the New Afrika Shrine, Alausa, Ikeja arresting street urchins and drug users in the area.
The Chairman of the agency, CSP Olayinka Egbeyemi said the enforcement operations became imperative following complaints from members of the public about the criminal activities of hoodlums and environmental nuisance of illegal street traders around the shrine.
Egbeyemi disclosed that 28 miscreants and 15 illegal street traders were arrested at various locations around Alausa, hinting that the raid was also initiated due to the nefarious acts within the vicinity of Afrika Shrine which presented a negative image to tourists and Lagosians as a whole.
He said, “The night enforcement operation was carried out on all roads around the New Afrika Shrine where sales of hard drugs like tramadol, codeine, skunk, weed, illegal mixed liquor, assorted food and all sorts of consumable and non-consumable items are freely sold on the streets in defiance of security agencies and government authority."
Egbeyemi maintained that the enforcement operations will be a continuous exercise in line with the vision of the present administration to rid the entire State of street urchins and criminals.
“The Lagos State government has vowed to sustain the security onslaught on all areas identified as criminal hideouts and hard drug outlets across the state, especially within the metropolis,” the task force boss added.
One of the arrested miscreants, Tunde Babalola, who was caught with a bag of substance suspected to be Indian hemp stated that he had been selling hard drugs for eight years, particularly around ‘African Shrine’ at Ikeja, Guardian reports.
He confirmed further that dealing in hard drugs is a lucrative business, saying he realized an average profit between N60,000 and N100,000 weekly from customers around Obalende, Akala, Mushin, Bariga and Ikeja.
Another arrested trader, Mrs. Abike Adeyemi, disclosed that she paid N1,900 every week to a representative of Ikeja Local Government from the sales of ‘skuchies’ and ‘hot drinks’ in the area.
Egbeyemi confirmed that the Lagos State Commissioner of Police, Zubairu Muazu, had directed that all those arrested be immediately charged to court.