NPA, NDLEA quarrel over Presidential Executive Order as NDLEA Threatens Legal Action

The National Drugs Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) has declared  that the Executive Order issued by the Acting President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, does not exclude her from the list of government agencies legalised to operate in Nigerian ports.
In compliance with the Executive Order,the Managing Director of Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), Ms Hadiza Usman,  had last week listed out to stakeholders the following agencies as eligible to operate in the ports. 1, Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) 2, Nigeria Maritime Adminstration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) 3, Nigeria Imigration Service (NIS) 4, Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) 5, Department of State Security (DSS) 6, Port Health (PH) and 7, Nigeria Police Force (NPF) She added that the NDLEA will be invited to the ports when its services are needed.
The NDLEA has however reiterated its pre-eminence as a key operator in the ports and any attempt to misinterprete the well thought-out Executive Order of the Acting President with a view to evicting her officials from the ports will be deemed as a slight on the Acting President.
Mitchell Oforyeju, NDLEA spokesperson, said in a statement that the agencie’s operations in the ports are statutorily backed and urged members of the public not to be misled by reports emenating from some quarters indicating that NDLEA was not on the list of seven agencies welcomed in the ports.
Oforyeju flaunted an NPA letter inviting NDLEA to a stakeholders meeting and which stated clearly that the agency was among those cleared to operate in Nigerian seaports, “NDLEA is among the seven agencies with the presidential mandate to operate at the seaports following the decision to reduce the number of government organisations at the ports in 2012, noted Oforyeju. He stated further: ” Section 8 (1b) of the NDLEA Act states that the agency shall work in collaboration with the Nigeria Customs Service in monitoring the movemet of goods and persons in any Customs Area, Customs Stations, Customs Ports or Customs Airports and seaching cargoes and incoming and outgoing  vessels,” said Oforyeju
Meanwhile, the Chief Executive Officer of NDLEA, Colonel Mohammad Mustapha (RTD) has threatend to take legal actions against any persons  bent on misinterpreting the Presidential Executive Order for selfish ends. “Any attempts to violate this directive shall be considered as a conspiracy to advance the nefarious activities of drugs cartels to the detriment of our national security. This must not be condoned.” Abdullah warned.
But the Nigerian Ports Authourity will not back down on its position that NDLEA is not listed among the seven agencies cleared to operate in the ports. NPA spokesman, Ibrahim Nasiru noted that the approved agencies are the NPA, NIMASA, PORT HEALTH, NCS, NIS, NPF and DSS. In this regard, therefore, the management of NPA wishes to unequivocally state that any other agency that was not listed in line with the Presidential Order should henceforth vacate operating from the premises of the nation’s seaports, Nasiru stated.
It could be recalled that in 2012, the then Minister of Finance Ngozi Okonjo Iweala, had decreed out of  the ports several government agencies who constituted a clog in trade facilitation, but NDLEA was not one of them.

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