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Nigerian Widow Caught as she Resorts to Desperate Measures as a Cocaine Courier



Almost every day, I read of some interesting ways people use to traffic drugs; inserting drugs into the hair, swallowing drugs, mixing it with food ingredients, lining it inside shoes, bags, packaged and manufactured items etc, and each time, I marvel at the cunning means they employ to traffic these drugs. Despite the fact that they are caught time and time again, people don’t relent and keep employing different means.

However, the recent arrest of a 48 year-old widow Mrs. Mande Fatima Bala who was caught with 66 wraps of methamphetamine weighing one kilogramme in her private parts at Murtala Muhammed International Airport, MMIA, Lagos is quite disturbing.

Operatives of National Drug Law Enforcement Agency, NDLEA arrested the suspect last weekend when she attempted to board a Kenyan Airways flight to Nairobi.

Mrs. Bala is a 1992 graduate of Accounting from Obafemi Awolowo University.

NDLEA Commander at Lagos airport, Hamza Umar, said: “This is incredible. She was desperate, but I am happy that she was promptly detected. No suspect has ever inserted such a large quantity of drugs in his or her part in the country. Usually, cases of insertion are not more than 300 grammes. It is amazing.”

Meanwhile, Chairman/Chief Executive of the agency, Mr. Ahmadu Giadem, said everything about the suspect was disturbing.

He said that the quantity of the drugs she inserted in her private part was so much that it affected her gait thus attracting attention of officials of the agency.

“Unfortunately, nemesis caught up with her when one of the wraps fell on the floor at the screening area as she bent down to pick up her belongings. Upon interrogation and examination, she confessed to the crime, stating that she was asked to swallow the drug, but was scared of death. In all, 66 wraps of methamphetamine with a total weight of one kilogramme was expelled from her private part.”

Giade also noted that preliminary investigation carried out by the agency revealed that she lived in Australia for about two years before she was deported in 2010.

Narrating her ordeal, the suspect, Mrs. Bala, a mother of three children and a widow, said she was lured into the act of illicit drug trafficking in order to pay her children’s school fees.

“I am a widow with three children. It was N45,000 school fees for my child and my landlord who is threatening to send me packing by July for not paying my rent pushed me into drug business. I was instructed to swallow the drugs, but I was scared because I have never seen drugs in my life.

“I used to sell water and drinks after my husband died in an auto accident in 2007. Few years after, I lost everything and could not feed. I studied accountancy, but I have never practiced.

“I was given the drug in a hotel. I was afraid of death because I have heard of people dying because of drug ingestion, so I decided to insert the wraps on my body. It was difficult because I could not walk normally, but I have to try my best to avoid suspicion. I have nobody to take care of my children.”

Amazing! 1kg of cocaine in her private part. Surely this must have some health risks, right? But whether it is so or not, I can’t help but wonder, was it desperation that led her to this?

What do you think about the means she tried using to traffic the drugs? What do you think about her confessional statement and her reasons for attempting to traffic the drugs?

On the other hand, why do you think news about drug trafficking is so common in Nigeria? People are caught every day, yet more and more people keep trying other means to traffic these drugs. Do you think stiffer penalties should be given to those caught?

Please share your thoughts.

News Source: Vanguard

Adeola Adeyemo is a graduate of Industrial Relations and Personnel Management from University of Lagos. However, her passion is writing and she worked as a reporter with NEXT Newspaper. She believes that anything can be written about; anything can be a story depending on the angle it is seen from and the writer's imagination. When she is not writing news or feature articles, she slips into her fantasies and creates interesting fiction pieces. She blogs at


  1. 1960chick

    June 25, 2012 at 3:29 am

    wow! how did it fall out though? didn’t she have any panties on? I’m just asking

  2. Alexmode

    June 25, 2012 at 3:30 am

    The reason why people wont quit drug trafficking is because of the condition of the economy…Although some people are out for fast $$, for many it’s poverty and suffering that pushes them into it…same as prostitution…

  3. Sidney

    June 25, 2012 at 4:36 am

    People caught drug trafficking should be punished. Forget about her story right now! It’s unfortunate but Many people in Nigeria are suffering. A lot of us are suffering! However, that is not an excuse to commit any crime and expect to be pardoned.

    Expect to be punished when you go against the law. This woman has only worsened her family situation. I look at Nigeria as a land of opportunity, you can set up any business of your choice easily. You can sell on the street without paying govt a dime unlike the western world. Stop complaining about how tough it is in Nigeria because that will not change anything. The govt doesn’t give a damn so get over it. think outside the box and come up with great ideas, instead of getting involved in the same old dishonest jobs because when you caught, you lose everything you worked for. Don’t you have hobbies that you are sure would make returns.

    Think Nigerians! Stop being lazy thinkers. E.g Abusing God’s name when there’s an issue that needs to be solved as if God will come down and do it for you. Or going into Kidnapping because that is the popular crime for now, going into drug trafficking because that’s what your neighbour’s son did to buy his new car and car in Ikeja etc. Think!

  4. Nwaogu hipolyte

    June 25, 2012 at 5:01 am

    Frustration is very bad, doing nothing is satanic, how can a woman who study accountancy live with children without employment, but must she be a drug pusher in other to survive? Please NDLEA counsel this woman and employ her for this is how GOD want her to be employed by you. Remember the children, the late husband that did not finish his assignment here before she departed. Please have mercy.

  5. idris

    June 25, 2012 at 5:24 am

    well,her reasons for such act is pitiable but fails to justify the so call offence,although various high profile crime is carried out by people here in nigeria by our corrupt leaders who make laws but put themself above it,justice must still be exercised. You dont get your right in a wrong way not to tall of breaking the law.where there is law,there is crime.

  6. Yakubu London

    June 25, 2012 at 6:04 am

    Its a pity the NDLEA should consider her case if only what she said is true.

  7. Tella Ibraheem

    June 25, 2012 at 6:22 am

    Regardless of any reason she might have, she knew the consequences befor.atemped it. As for who is to be blame, govt apart individual appart.

  8. Baba Usman Yashikira Kw

    June 25, 2012 at 6:30 am

    On our president’s trip to Brazil Nigerians sldnt expect to know every minute details.. else where, heads of state travel, unnoticed, to even war zones until their safe return before notifying the ppl. The notice to Nigerians, when Kaduna was under attacks, was the mistake.

  9. Ben

    June 25, 2012 at 6:57 am

    Pressure, System of Nigeria government, poverty, and evil politicians, i dont blame the poor women

  10. dangiwa

    June 25, 2012 at 7:00 am

    I think we should begining to see trafficking as terrorism and should be given equal ponishment.

  11. hashim

    June 25, 2012 at 7:02 am

    ……..and in the end she would be thrown out of the house and into the jail. and what becomes of the child? another boko haram recruit.. . . . .what a pity .

    • Dom

      June 25, 2012 at 8:36 am

      Hashim your comment sent goose pimples through my body because its so touching but d law wil take its course since its a serious crime.

  12. Bro AbdulKareem AbdulAzeez

    June 25, 2012 at 7:12 am

    Two wrongs cannot make a right. Failure of govt to provide a job is not a licence to engage in an illegal deals. She has only compounded her problems. Who will now care for her children now that she is in custody.

  13. Daniel K.

    June 25, 2012 at 7:40 am

    it is just unfortunate she fell for because of poverty. This is what poverty is doing to our country, no hope for the poor. Poor widow God will see her through in this case.

  14. Anure

    June 25, 2012 at 7:41 am

    Porverty and unemployment is the reason, the woman should be giving a job without punishment it is not her fault, i am a woman without a job too and i know her pains

  15. Ginika

    June 25, 2012 at 7:43 am

    Very , very disturbing indeed.

    So from that 1kg, how long will that supply last? I dont understand how all this works o, it is beyond me.

  16. Adeeko

    June 25, 2012 at 8:00 am

    I think the remote cause is greed, all her excuses were flimpsy and baseless. when she lost her husband, did she lost her certificate? must you send your children to private school at all cost? no send them to public school and when things get better, withdraw them back. i submit that this is not the first time, she has bn in drug business for long. Kudos NDLEA!

  17. Victor chukwuemeka

    June 25, 2012 at 8:06 am

    Most people push drugs out of frustration nd lack of jobs.

  18. pyrov

    June 25, 2012 at 8:14 am

    oh wat a pity for the poor woman, but the govt must reason to this,cus how lng are we going to be in this state of joblesnes.

  19. Novelty

    June 25, 2012 at 8:20 am

    Unfortunate! A quick observation on the mix up in this article. The tilte says she inserted “Cocaine”, while the body of the article says she inserted “metamphetamine”. Cocaine and metamphetamine are different drugs. Greater attention to details is helpful in this sort of reporting.

  20. Kgomotso

    June 25, 2012 at 8:21 am

    Its not just in Nigeria,its also the same hear in SA and it has nothing to do with poverty,its all about people wanting to make a quick buck,in SA what i have noticed is that these people are hardly poor,they want to get money that they have not worked hard for,people simply want to have money fall from heaven,forgeting that it takes hard work to build wealth and even harder work to keep and maintain that wealth

  21. tolu

    June 25, 2012 at 8:40 am

    the war against drug trafficking is being fought on the surface. NDLEA needs to investigate and apprehend the people providing the drug. Arresting trafficker is like dealing with a tree by plucking its leaves. indentify an arrest the kingpins. shikenna.

  22. Zeek

    June 25, 2012 at 8:40 am

    It‘s a pity this is a poor widow, though i dont believe her reasons for doing this. But please NDLEA, tamper justice with mercy! Dont throw her into the dongeoun. Just a small measure of punishment, then Councel her&make something good out of her.

  23. abiamone

    June 25, 2012 at 8:45 am

    It is easy to condemn this woman for what she did. Her story needs confirmation before we can pas objective judgment. (i) Is she a widow? (ii) Has she children? (iii) Is she a graduate and in accountancy? If these are correct, Nigeria should hold her head in shame (if she has a head) that a graduate in accountancy cannot find employment in oil-rich Nigeria. If our NDLEA are so clever, why can’t we use them to arest and prosecute our politicians who loot the national treasury in billions of naira with impunty?

  24. Ezekiel

    June 25, 2012 at 8:46 am

    I dnt blame dem cos wen dere is no way of survival nd nobody in dis country wnt 2 help nd i tink al dis wil make dem to commit such act.

  25. ogbuefi

    June 25, 2012 at 8:49 am

    The woman need to be pardon,her crime is the least of what they commit s in Nigeria generally,

  26. Eyah destiny

    June 25, 2012 at 8:54 am

    Frustration frustration frustration, hav any of u bein into dat before? If yes u wil understand what she’s has been passin true. She need 2 b 4givin, not just dat also get her a job 2 feed her children.

  27. Chris olisa

    June 25, 2012 at 8:57 am

    The poor widow should be judged wit mercy,is nt he fault dat she did commit such a crime,only God knws wat she is passing 2ru,govt should pity her nd giv her a job 4 dat mata.

  28. christy

    June 25, 2012 at 9:08 am

    Greed and nt poverty,I hate wen d Govt is blame for more interested in how she inject thoes drug into her private part,and if not because one of d drug fell,they wouldn’t have been able to detect? She s nt smart,wat happen to putting on pant and double tight?

  29. Salihu habib

    June 25, 2012 at 9:20 am

    Wat a pity 4 d poor widow..Bt i wondr y she mst nt cut acordng 2 her coat,by putng her chldrns in a prvate schl wen she quite knew dat tins where nt movng smothly 4 her,atleast she shuld have plan nd tink wisely dan engagng in a tin she quite knws d repacotn wen caught.Hwever ndlea oficial shuld pls hv mercy on her 4 d sake of her chldrns nd late husbnd.

  30. Eyitope

    June 25, 2012 at 9:20 am

    I am a woman and l know the pain of single parent. I think the woman should be forgiven if truly her claims are right. The landlord that pushed an helpless woman to commit such offence out of no other choice should pay for the offence committed if truly confirmed.

    • Gimmer

      June 26, 2012 at 7:05 am

      Yif they forgive her, then the law enforcement should forgive every criminal who is able to com up with a daze-inducing sob story. Msceeeewtch.

  31. Mz B

    June 25, 2012 at 9:21 am

    the first thing that came to my mind was sadness, not even that she should be punished. Sad for her, her children, life in general that people have to resort to this. It’s just sad 🙁

  32. Samuel Damian

    June 25, 2012 at 9:24 am

    Well,Poverty or no poverty,ignorance is not an excuse for breach of de law.An accountant lik her should be a hot cake in de labour market except if she is a half baked accountant whose results holds no water in competitive economy lik ours.GOD wil forgive her but de full effect of de law will be dramatized on its victim though mildly.lets live an upright life in dis we country.

  33. Eyitope

    June 25, 2012 at 9:28 am

    I am a woman and l know the pain of a single parent. I think the woman should be forgiven if truly her claims are right. The landlord that pushed an helpless woman to commit such offence out of no other choice should pay for the offence committed if confirmed. If the NDLEA keep punishing offenders alone and not the real originator of the offence, drug trafficking can never stop in Nigeria because those sending them will always have others to send, it will just be a case of bad luck for the person caught, business will still be in progress.

  34. Akinboni

    June 25, 2012 at 9:37 am

    Despiration can happen to any1 in life. What dis woman had done is too risky to bear with in d sence dat she wants to use wat is precious to her to get wealth. The issue of women in widowhood is becoming unbearable whereby d husband collects everything dat belongs to d women. I know dat d law has caught up with her but if what she has said is tru, i suggest dat they shd tamper justice with mercy so dat she can go and take care of her children.

  35. Kings

    June 25, 2012 at 9:40 am

    Yes! Economy is bad. Agreed. But the mind is also very corrupt. The woman had a certificate but prefered to idle because her husband was rich. And when d table turned she could not adapt to the current situation so she stayed idle. An idle mind is the devil’s workshop. So eventually she started devising evil. Now she has not only digraced her family, but also put her children in trouble. I don’t pity her but the innocent children. My opinion is it is not her first crime

  36. Abs

    June 25, 2012 at 9:43 am

    For someone who is so ‘timidly’ legal (I wont evn cross the street if the lil green man aint showing on the traffic light), I shudder when WOMEN do stuff like this. Unthinkable!

  37. Anthony

    June 25, 2012 at 10:07 am

    what she did was wrong, NDLEA please forgive her because of her children, she will not do that again.

    • Gimmer

      June 26, 2012 at 7:03 am

      You are kidding right?

  38. jen

    June 25, 2012 at 10:39 am

    I don’t do drugs,I don’t even drink alcohol infact after y accident I was prescribed hydrocodone which people use to get hight of and I stopped taking it,its a pain killer.I’ve been to the highest and top places in this world,partied with the rich and famous,from our president in Nigeria to all gov’t people around the world,most of them do drugs,now for the past 6yrs I hang around these people but guess what,I’ve neva even tasted drugs ever and don’t drink alcohol.Now one thing I don’t understand is,how do this people taking drugs affect you the average joe who doesn’t take drugs?in America,drugs and prostituttion is illegal cuz they can’t get taxes off it but legal in some states.if this lady chose to push drugs how does it concern u and I?I really don’t think its any1’s business but her. Because she knows the Dangers but chose to go ahead and do it.Ndlea what ever they call themselves seize the drugs and still sell to some1,they are the biggest drugs traffickers sef trust like many Africans like is hard in africa and for someone to go to this lent for money she must have tried a lot of this that didn’t work.imagine you mother not being able to feed,cloth,house and send u to school?you will blame her all your life

  39. buchi

    June 25, 2012 at 10:51 am

    i’m amazed at how some ppl on here think she shld be pardoned cos of her sob story. i empathize with her but there is no moral justification for what she did. pleeasse
    she is not the only single parent in Nigeria.
    she is not the only tenant on the verge of eviction
    she is not the only widow alive
    If anybody can see reasons with her actions then i must declare, Nigeria is in BIG trouble!! God help us

    • Concerned Citizen

      June 25, 2012 at 12:20 pm

      Most sensible person in the room, Nigerians are terrible pretentious people, nothing ever justifies drug trafficking, unless ur family has been kidnapped by drug lords or something, just goes to show how honest the average Nigerian is.

  40. Kike

    June 25, 2012 at 11:06 am

    Nothing justifies her action. why do we always blame the devil for our bad? Yeah the economy of the country is bad but that is not enough reason for a “mother” to enter into such ilegal act. Gosh! she has only worsened d condition of her family and also traumatized her childrend.
    I strongly support that she should be dealt with.

  41. cathy

    June 25, 2012 at 11:50 am

    very very sad indeed

  42. idelle

    June 25, 2012 at 4:45 pm

    i am very pity for nigeria government , that is very obvious that a nigeria accounted woman as caught in drug abuse , i have notting to say because the government are to wick and they are till at asleep ,, because if they are not at asleep they should have granted that woman a good job , and still study her for many years,, WHO CAN CHANGE NIGERIA ,,, we have not yet seen it we are living in boundage… we dont a a beeter research , our economy is very bad ,, how can some have big big carses without paying taxes , and we know we can have a job site ,, we have oil pour but we dont ave common refinery for ours oil , i can called naija goverment by this name … a fool of fourteen an a fool of fourteen is a fool forever ,, u ave something and u dont kw how to make use of it .. nigeria peoples dont ave to me suffer like this .. just look some are doing out of the country to western world,, but did nigeria know that western world many people are traveling to ,, many of them are not richer that nigeria .. nigeria govorment are still living in darkness ,,, our goverment try and improve the condition of sytem some things in nigeria is very worst now …… naija naija naija una nor dey make people from una country live better live ,, una dey live ,, only me one shopp ,, make una kw say na all os us na hin get that money ….as naija be una surpose even dey pay for the under age children ….. and we ave to improve our sense of urgency for this ,, becos we done to dey look the goverment

    • buchi

      June 26, 2012 at 10:32 am

      WOW! r u for real? Do u speak this way or just type this way?
      To cry or to laugh?……*tough decision*

  43. marvel

    June 25, 2012 at 11:28 pm

    I NEVER wish to be so desperate. What a shame. Who knows how far she would have gone career wise if she had worked with her degree. Marry and ‘submitting’ will not kill these ladies sha…

  44. Elma

    June 26, 2012 at 11:40 pm

    Pls u guys shd 4gv ha des is 9ja 4 u no job

  45. Tiki

    June 27, 2012 at 1:41 pm

    All those people taling about forgiving the lady because she has 3 underage children – do you know how many children will be kidnapped, drugged with th drugs she has transported and raped, forced into prostitution, etc etc.

    If you can’t do the time, don’t do the crime. Simple.

  46. Abubakar

    September 10, 2013 at 12:47 pm

    How can a woman who is not from the northern part of this country claim to be a wife to a respected politician in the north. Use his family name to commit a crime. I was surprised when I read and in the national dailies

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