Saudi Arabia releases another Nigerian held for drug charge
Barely 72 hours after the release of Zainab Aliyu, another Nigerian detainee has been freed by the Saudi authorities.
Ibrahim Abubakar, who was arrested for drug-related charge, had spent several months on awaiting trial before the Federal Government’s intervention.
Special Assistant to the President on New Media, Bashir Ahmed, who broke the news yesterday via his Twitter handle @BashirAhmed, stated that Abubakar’s hurdle was similar to Aliyu’s, a graduating student of Maitama Yusuf University, who was discharged on Tuesday after four months in captivity.
The lucky Abubakar was handed over to the Acting Consular General of Nigeria in Jeddah, Garba Satomi Grema.
The presidential aide confirmed: “Saudi authorities (have) released Malam Ibrahim Abubakar to the Acting Consular General of Nigeria in Jeddah, Garba Satomi Grema. He was arrested over alleged drug trafficking, the same offence as Zainab Habib Aliyu, who was also released on Tuesday.”
He recalled that the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Mustapha Suleiman, who announced the Aliyu’s reprieve at a news conference in Abuja, had promised the freedom of Abubakar in due course.
Meanwhile, the six airport handlers arrested by the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) in connection with Aliyu’s luggage are to appear before Justice Lewis Allagoa of the Federal High Court, Kano.
The agency picked up the sextet at the Mallam Aminu Kano International Airport, Kano for allegedly conniving vwith a notorious cartel to insert 2,000 taps of tramadol in Aliyu’s luggage.
The victim, who was heading for the lesser hajj alongside her mother and kid sister, was subsequently detained by the Saudi authorities.
The incident attracted concern after her father, Habibu Aliyu Kila, a press secretary to former Governor Saminu Turaki of Jigawa State, petitioned the Federal Government and the NDLEA.