By Abdul Rahman Suagibu –
NEW AFRICA BUSINESS NEWS, SIERRA LEONE, FREETOWN- In Gbarnga, Bong County, Liberia Drugs Enforcement Agency (LDEA) Bong County chapter Saturday, April 27, 2019, burned drugs with a street value of over L$16 million ( US94,117.64 ). Abdul Rahman Suagibu Bangura – West Africa Correspondent for The New Africa Business News has been following as events unfolding the situation.
The drugs were set ablaze in the presence of security actors and stakeholders of the county, including acting Bong County Superintendent, Anthony Sheriff.
LDEA’s Bong County Commander, Alex Toweh, before setting the drugs on fire said every district in the county is being confronted with the challenges of drug abuse and illicit drug trafficking with a huge number of the youth population actively engaged in illicit drug use.
Toweh said Saturday’s burning exercise was the single largest public destruction of burning since he took over nearly nine months ago.
“This calls for concerted efforts to mitigate the negative consequences of this menace on the health, social-economic, and security of our country,” he said.
Toweh said some of the drugs were recovered during raids, while some were recovered at checkpoints across the county.
Toweh said when he took over the LDEA in Bong County nine months ago, he vowed to fight the menace.
He said the raid on drugs users was a continuous process, adding that the agency will partner with other security agency to fight drugs and its dealers.
“You will recall when I took over as Commander of the LDEA in Bong County; I stated that I would fight drug dealers by going after them. The substances we are destroying here today were recovered during the course of two months of raiding on drugs users in the county. The substances contain Cocaine, Tramadol, Codeine, Indian Hemp and other dangerous drugs worth over 16 million Liberian dollars,” he said.
Continuing, he added: “Those drugs were seized between February and now. Since our warehouse had become filled beyond capacity, we decided to approach the court for us to destroy them.”
Toweh further thanked members of the public for their useful tips and urged them to inform agents whenever they suspect any drug dealer operating in their community.
“I will advise the community to always partner with us so that we can protect our children from illegal use of drugs,” he said.
“I want to assure the people of Bong County that this partnership will go from community to community to get the drugs off the street.”
Acting Bong County Superintendent Anthony Sheriff described the event as symbolic, saying that there was a need to destroy the drugs before it destroys the county.
He described drugs situation in Bong County as “frightening and sad”, while commending the LDEA for its efforts in making such huge seizure.
He would continue to accord maximum support to the LDEA in Bong County to enable it to perform its statutory functions in the interest of humanity.
The acting superintendent appealed to parents, schools, religious bodies and the government to continue to support the fight against the deadly monster (drug abuse).
Heads of security agencies in the county, Bureau of Immigration, Liberia National Police, firefighters and other government functionaries graced the occasion.
( US$1.00 = L$170.00 ) 05/02/ 2019
For New Africa Business News Abdul Rahman Suagibu Reports, Africa Correspondent.