Nimbians Abandon Rice for Marijuana Production

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The Nimba branch of the national Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) has identified Wea Clan in Buu–Yao Administrative District as a marijuana production center in the county.
Speaking to reporters on August 31, DEA County Commander, Col. Julius Kanubah, said citizens in Wea Clan, some of the residents are involved more in the cultivation of marijuana than their staple food, rice.
He added that most of the marijuana that has been seized from traffickers is believed to have come from the area. The Clan has approximately five towns including Beaplay, old and new Beadatuo towns, Wea Neintuo and Binwea.
Col. Kanubah explained that about two years ago, DEA officers raided several farms in the clan and destroyed huge quantities of young marijuana crops, but those in the production of the illegal substance continued to conduct business in the narcotic drug.
He added that due to the limited manpower and the recent outbreak of the deadly Ebola virus disease (EVD), the DEA has been unable to regularly visit some of the suspected farms.
He named two towns in the clan where marijuana crops are mainly produced as Wea Beadatuo and Wea Newtown respectively.
Col Kanuba also named the Gbi Forest in Lower Nimba County as one of the areas where marijuana is heavily cultivated, more than rice.
The Gbi Forest is situated around the Gbi and Dorlu Administrative Districts in Tappita Statutory District, Lower Nimba County. The serious challenges of accessibility to that part of the county presents an apparent security for those growing marijuana undisturbed.
However, Col. Kanuba said the DEA is working with the civil authority in Buu–Yao Administrative District; a neighboring district, to help sensitize the residents to desist from cultivating marijuana.
In a related development, a Nigerian national who was recently arrested and charged with cocaine trafficking in Ganta has been sent to court for trial.
Paul Omerny Ikebgunm was charged for “unlawful possession of a narcotic drug (cocaine) and is expected to appear at the Sanniquellie Magisterial Court to answer to the charge.

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