Banjul, Gambia(PANA) - The Gambia opposition United Democratic Party (UDP) has urgently called on the Gambian government to conduct a swift and thorough investigation into cocaine worth GMD 4.5 billion Dalasis o about $87,040,615.50 seized at the Banjul port on Thursday, 7 January by the Drug Law Enforcement Agency of The Gambia (DLEAG).
A statement signed by Ousainu ANM Darboe, Secretary General and Party Leader, made available to PANA here Sunday, also called for urgent review of the security protocols at the Gambia Ports Authority on all shipments bound for Banjul.
“The United Democrats Pay receives the news of a major drug burst by the agents of NDEA at the Gambia Ports Authority with shock and alarm because of the reputational damage this will cause to the nation’s international image and brand.
“UDP has learned that it is the largest drug seizure in our nation’s history, reportedly over 2 tonnes of cocaine with a street value of over US$88 million.
“Although the consignee of the shipment has been named by journalists, this has not been officially confirmed by the Gambia Police Force,” the UDP said.
The statement added: “Unfortunately, this is not the first time that the Gambian Port is used for smuggling drugs by international criminal cartels.”
“This is extremely concerning to the UDP because it makes the Gambia vulnerable to infiltration by international organised crime groups, seeing how weak the Gambia’s security infrastructure is at the ports of entry, to target the Gambia as a weak link in the global efforts to combat trans-boundary criminal enterprises that rely on their vast criminal networks that are active in money laundering and terrorists financing,” the statement said.
-0- PANA MSS/RA 10Jan2021