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The Drug Enforcement Commission (DEC) has seized fresh plants and dry loose cannabis weighing over 1.89 tones with 17 notorious drug ring leaders picked up in hard to reach communities on the Copperbelt province.

This follows operations conducted in several parts of the country over the weekend tagged “Serenity in my community”.

DEC Public Relations Officer Mwenge Mulenga says the Commission in Northern province seized over 1.3 tonnes of fresh plants of cannabis and 34.8 kilograms of dry loose Cannabis from Anthony Bwalya Kasumba, male aged 34, of Nondo village in Senga Hill District, a former convict who abandoned the contraband and is currently on the run.

“Other suspects have been identified as Kabwe Silungwe, male, aged 54, jointly charged with Obrey Silungwe, male, aged 26, both of Chikoti village in Senga Hill District, who were arrested for Unlawful cultivation of 35 kilograms of fresh plants cannabis,” said Mr. Mulenga in a statement to RCV News in Lusaka today.

Meanwhile, Mr. Mulenga said that a separate operation in Northern Province, lead to the apprehension of two suspects for unlawful cultivation and trafficking in cannabis weighing a combined weight of over 300 Kilograms.

“The two have been identified as Fred Sikasote, male, aged 32, of Iyendwe Village in Mpulungu District, who was found with fresh cannabis plants weighing 305 Kilograms, and Sunday Sikatunga, a male, aged 32, of Kungu Village in Kasama, for trafficking in dry loose cannabis weighing 2.7 Kilograms,” said Mr. Mulenga.

He said the Commission in North Western Province, arrested Kayombo Majimela, a male aged 28 from Lishipa village and Kapalu Liwate, a male aged 44 from Liwate village in Chavuma District, for illegal cultivation of fresh cannabis weighing over 200 Kilograms.

Mr. Mulenga said the commission in Solwezi District, arrested a trio identified as Aaron Chisola, male aged 30, Yanga Womba, male aged 20, and Luka Kasanga, male aged 34, all of Mbonge Village in Solwezi district, were arrested for illegal cultivation of fresh cannabis plants weighing 16 Kilograms.

“The Commission in Luapula Province in Chiengi District picked up five suspects for trafficking in a total weight of 124 Kilograms of loose Cannabis and three Kilograms of Cannabis seeds,” said Mr. Mulenga.

Mr. Mulenga said DEC officers from Chinsali district conducted a joint operation with the Zambia Wildlife Authority ZAWA in Chinyase Village Isoka District, leading to the arrest of Two suspects for trafficking in 126 kilograms of loose cannabis concealed in dry banana leaves packed in polythene bags.

He said the duo have been identified as Barnabas Mwila, a male aged 22, arrested for trafficking in 65.5kgs of loose cannabis, and Felix Mwila, a male aged 25, apprehended for trafficking in 60.5 Kilograms of cannabis, both of Chimatila Village.

“In the turn of events, three individuals believed to be close relatives of the suspects attempted to bribe DEC officers with K1000 cash, but officers maintained their integrity by arresting them together with the other suspects,” said Mr. Mulenga.

He said the three have been identified as George Fube, aged 40; Besa Mulenga, male, aged 46; and Saviour Bwalya, male, aged 26, all of Chimatila Village.

Mr. Mulenga said the three relatives have since been detained at Isoka Police Station, and money has been seized pending further investigations and handover to the Anti-Corruption Commission ACC.

“A combined team of DEC Officers from Ndola, Kitwe, Mufulira and Chililabombwe conducted a clean-up operation in Ndola’s notorious Sinya Compound, as well as Old Mushili, Kaloko, Kawama and Chifubu Dongo area in which 17 notorious ring leaders and drug peddlers were arrested with a total of 35kgs of dry loose cannabis seized,” said Mr. Mulenga.

He said the move has cheered members of the community in the area, who launched several reports to the Commission after living in fear at the hands of these notorious youths.

Mr. Mulenga said the Commission’s recent success in seizing cannabis across Zambia highlights its unwavering commitment to dismantling drug trafficking operations.


By Michelo Hachizibe.

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