How Apapa Customs Intelligence Unit tracks Tramadol, harmful drugs …Uncovers new techniques of concealing Tramadol …Profiles container of hard drugs from high sea

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How Apapa Customs Intelligence Unit tracks Tramadol, harmful drugs

.Uncovers new techniques of concealing Tramadol

.Profiles container of hard drugs from high sea

By Udeme Clement

AC Ahmed:

The officer in charge of Apapa Customs Intelligence Unit, CIU, Assistant Comptroller Ahmed Bello Ale, has saved the lives of many Nigerians from bad effect of harmful drugs coming into the country through the seaport.

Most disturbing is the fact that such drugs are imported into Nigeria in excess milligrams and without approval from National Agency for Food, Drugs, Administration and Control, NAFDAC.

Nobody knows AC Ahmed’s operational strategies and the technique he uses, but he has tracked several containers of Tramadol and other harmful drugs from Apapa seaport.

In fact, this officer gets intelligence signal from India, U.S and other countries in the World.  Also, he has mastered the act of detecting containers conveying controlled drugs, to the extent of profiling such deadly cargo right from the high sea.

This Customs officer who looks very simple like a “Young School Boy” anywhere you see him, operates with high level of intelligence that enables him from the computers in his office to detect harmful drugs, no matter the method of concealment, or tactics used by importers to escape security checks.

Senior officers at Apapa Customs Command in a chat with Financial Business during the week, described AC Ahmed as an officer with eagle-eye while others called him Intelligence-Personified.

 Financial Business Correspondent, who has been following seizures of Tramadol and other controlled drugs recorded since 2018, at Apapa Command through the efforts of AC Ahmed and his men at CIU, shows the records below.

“On Tuesday, February 6, 2018, based on credible intelligence from Customs Intelligence Unit, CIU, Apapa Command intercepted 3 X 40ft containers with numbers MRSU 3637149; MRKU 6196764 and MRSU 3516384 imported by Villa Gold Pharmacy from India.

“The drugs seized include 936 cartons of Tramadol Hydrochloride tablets (225mg). 56 cartons of Collstop- Chlorpheniramine Maleate Capsules (4mg), in MRSU 3637149 container.

“368 cartons of Tramadol capsules BP (120mg). 192 cartons of Tramadol Capsules (250mg). 160 cartons of Dobumol Anagestic in MRKU 6196764 container.   Also, 554 cartons of Tramadol Capsules BP 120mg. 176 cartons of Col-caps, were found in MRSU 3516384 container.”

More so, on February 7, 2018, another 1 X 40ft container number MRKU 6058282 was intercepted from the same port. The drugs seized were 200 cartons of Tramadol (225mg). 330 cartons of Ibramol. Chest and Lungs tablets (15mg). 198 cartons of Col-Caps Capsules (4mg).  453 cartons of Really Extra (50mg).  The Duty Paid Value, DPV, of the 4 X 40ft containers stood at over N110million.

That was not all. In November 2018, Apapa Customs through credible intelligence seized 40 containers of Tramadol, with DPV of over N7.3billion.  Most remarkable was the rejection of N150million bribe by the officers.

At present, AC Ahmed and his team at Apapa CIU have uncovered a new method of concealing Tramadol with another drug known as Really Extra and re-packaging it differently like a normal drug.

Thus, the exceptional performance of AC Ahmed has not gone un-noticed.  The former Customs Area Controller, CAC, of the Command, Comptroller Bashir Abubakar,  now Assistant Comptroller-General of Customs, ACG Abubakar  honoured him with award of recognition for his hard work and resilience.

The inscription on the award given to him reads, “Award of outstanding performance given to AC Ahmed for his immense dedication, sincerity and high level of professionalism, which contributed to the success of the Command in 2018, especially in the areas of revenue collection and suppression of smuggling, as well as discipline”.

Today, it is on record that Apapa Customs realised a huge sum of over N404billion as revenue collection for 2018, following tremendous efforts from officers with CIU.


*This is the first segment of this report. We will bring you more details on the profile of AC Ahmed in our next report.

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