NDLEA Discovers Plot By Cartels To Introduce ‘Powerful’ Synthetic Drug Into Nigeria

The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) has uncovered plans by some drug cartels to introduce fentanyl into the Nigerian market.

Fentanyl is a powerful synthetic opioid anesthesia that is similar to morphine but is 50 to 100 times more potent.

In a statement issued on Tuesday, NDLEA spokesperson, Femi Babafemi, said the illicit drug was also 100 times stronger than tramadol.

“We are not unaware of desperate efforts by some drug cartels to introduce to the Nigerian market, fentanyl, which according to the CDC, is 80 times as potent as morphine and 100 times more potent than heroin,” the statement reads.

“(This) they plan to do either in liquid or powder form and/or with misleading labels to target our youth population.

“(This) they may also mix with other prescription drugs. The illegally manufactured fentanyl in its liquid form can come in nasal sprays, eye drops, or small candies.

“As a result, parents and other stakeholders are advised to be vigilant, alert and warn their young ones against attempting to experiment with this illicit substance.

“Symptoms for fentanyl exposure and/or overdose include pinpoint pupils, falling asleep or losing consciousness, slow and shallow breathing, choking or gurgling sounds, limp body, and pale, blue, or cold skin.”

The NDLEA spokesperson further attributed the drug to more than 70% of opioid overdose deaths in the United States, and a major contributor to fatal and nonfatal overdoses.

With a current drug abuse prevalence of 14.4%, Babafemi said steps would be taken to ensure that the lethal drug does not circulate in Nigeria.

Babafemi assured Nigerians that necessary measures had been deployed to monitor the cartels involved in this latest threat to public health with a view to frustrating their criminal plot.

He added that those found wanting would be made to face the wrath of the law.

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