10 Functions of NDLEA in Nigeria and Roles You Should Know

10 Functions of NDLEA in Nigeria and Roles. The Nigerian Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) is a federal law enforcement agency in Nigeria. What are its role and main functions? This article will enlighten you about the Functions of NDLEA in Nigeria and Roles, read through carefully.

Functions of NDLEA in Nigeria

The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) is a Federal law enforcement agency in Nigeria under the Federal Ministry of Justice (Nigeria) charged with eliminating the growing, processing, manufacturing, selling, exporting, and trafficking of hard drugs.

National Drugs Law Enforcement Agency is a federal government agency popularly known by NDLEA. It was established in 1989 (30 years ago).

This agency has involvement in drugs, especially their importation, exportation, sale, transfer, purchase, cultivation, manufacture, extraction, and possession is universally unacceptable.

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The headquarters of this agency is located in Lagos, Nigeria. Visit the official NDLEA Portal  to know about the agency, vision, mission, history, annual reports, drug laws, news, and events.

The Nigerian Drug Law Enforcement Agency was established to perform specific functions in order to combat drug trafficking and drug smuggling, as well as, the use of drugs within Nigeria.

Having said that, there are other functions assigned to the Nigerian Drug Law Enforcement Agency. In this article, you will get to know the following:

The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency NDLEA, Is currently the sole organization approved by the Federal government of Nigeria to carry out due enforcement on all drug-related matters.

What is NDLEA?

The acronym NDLEA stands for The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency. It is a Federal agency in Nigeria responsible for the elimination of the production, processing, selling, exporting, and smuggling of hard drugs.

Over the years, the Nigerian government has tried in many ways to address the growing availability of illicit drugs and their use.

The agency was, therefore, another effort of the government, established by the promulgation of Decree Number 48 of 1989, now Act of Parliament.

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What You Need to Know About the Nigerian Drug Law Enforcement Agency

Agency Overview

  • Formed: January 1, 1990
  • Annual Budget: NGN325m (FY2017)
  • Employees: 7,600 (2014)
  • Legal Personality: Government: Government Agency

Jurisdictional Structure

  • Federal Agency: Nigeria
  • General nature: Federal Law Enforcement

Operational Structure

  • Headquarters: NHQ, 4 Shaw Road, Ikoyi-Lagos
  • Agent Executives: Col. Muhammad Mustapha Abdallah (Chairman/Chief executive Officer of the National Drug Law Enforcement) (2015)
  • Parent Agency: Federal Ministry of Justice

Vision and Mission of the NDLEA

The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency aims at becoming the foremost and leading Drug Law Enforcement Agency on the Continent and equally in the world.

It tries to achieve this through the prohibition of the supply of illicit drugs and control of its demand. Through this, the agency hopes to help create and maintain a good image of Nigeria all over the world.

The agency puts to use all its means and resources for the total elimination of illegal drugs. It does this through investigation of all drug-related cases and recovery of proceeds acquired from drug trades.

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Functions and Roles of the NDLEA

The NDLEA has over 7600 staff operating at different levels to help carry out its functions.

agents investigate and prosecute all crimes related to drug trafficking. They also partner with international drug agencies and units to enforce drug laws.

Over time, the agency has recorded some obstacles to its functions. These include the problem of unguarded zones on the borders which makes it easy for drug dealers and barons to trade contrabands.

Another is the corruption and injustice where criminals are able to go free, escaping the hands of the law.

The functions and roles of the NDLEA are listed below:

1. Investigation of drug-related crimes

The primary task of the NDLEA is to regularly find measures and means of finding out drug-related crimes which are the cultivation, trading and use of narcotic drugs and substances.

2. Enforcing drug laws

There are several units outside the NDLEA with the responsibility of enforcing rules and regulations regarding drugs in the Nigerian constitution. The job of the NDLEA is to partner with these other agencies so as to enact drug laws.

3. Destroying narcotic plants and substances

The agency many times has to start from the root problem, the cultivation of hard drugs. The agency has the power to destroy narcotic plants and trees. By doing this, the agency will succeed at stifling the demands for these substances.

4. Partnering with international agencies to fight drug trafficking

Though a federal agency, the agency has international obligations. Its role is to oversee all drug-related affairs both within and outside Nigeria and enforce international drug laws.

5. Leading in efforts related to drug-related researches

The agency serves as a technical and scientific unit in studies and experiments related to the use of narcotic substances. Since new substances are being adapted to form illegal substances, the NDLEA has a leading role to play in gathering these activities.

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6. Tracing proceeds from illegal drug trades

The NDLEA is responsible for finding out drug barons and dealers. Tracking illicit financial flows and seizing such proceeds

7. Prosecution of criminals

The NDLEA is responsible for bringing criminals and suspected individuals to justice.

8. Educating the public

The NDLEA educates the public on the narcotic substances; dangers and abuse. They patrol public places such as seaports, airports, and borders to prevent the importation and exportation of hard drugs.

9. Working Beyond Borders to Stifle Drug Activities

The Nigerian Drug Law Enforcement Agency’s jurisdiction is usually within Nigeria. However, they do have some international obligations. They are responsible for pursuing and coordinating Nigerian drug investigations both domestically and abroad.

They are to work with international drug units in several matters of enforcing drug laws and suppressing international activities of illicit traffic.

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10. Identify and Investigate Suspects of illegal drug use and Participation

Anyone being suspected of being involved in drug-related offences are to be identified and investigated under the purview of the drug act.

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There have been credible allegations of drug-related corruption at the National Drug and Law Enforcement Agency itself.

In late November 2005 NDLEA Chairman Bello Lafiaji was sacked by President Olusegun Obasanjo due to allegations of corruption. However, after proper investigation, it was realized that he was setup. This was because he had sworn to bring down drug merchants and barons and they connived with some third party to frame him up. He was later fully discharged and acquitted on November 22, 2011. However, reports have been issued of senior NDLEA staff and members involved in drug-related crimes themselves by striking deals with drug barons and illegally letting them go free.

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