British High Commissioner to Ghana

Cocaine saga: We did not collaborate with NACOB - UK

The British High Commission in Accra has denied collaborating with Ghana’s Narcotics Control Board (NACOB) in a case in which one Ms Nayele Ametefeh was arrested at the Heathrow Airport with 12.5 kilogrammes of cocaine.

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According to a statement issued by the UK High Commission in Accra Friday, the UK authorities had no knowledge that Ms Ametetefeh was heading to the UK with drugs.

“UK authorities had no prior knowledge of the intentions of Nayele Ametefeh before flying from Accra to London on 9/10 November,” the statement read.

The High Commission said although the UK has been collaborating with NACOB since 2006, the nature of the partnership requires that potential drug traffickers are prevented from boarding flights to the UK in order to traffic drugs.

The statement said: “UK authorities work closely with NACOB to ensure that, wherever possible, any potential drug trafficker to the UK from Ghana is arrested here in Ghana and not permitted to board a flight in order to traffic drugs."

The High Commission declined to comment on claims that the suspect used the VVIP section at the Kotoko International Airport (KIA), noting that Ghana's Forigin Affairs Ministry will be the best body to address those claims.

It, however, stressed that it would continue to work with Ghana to combat drug trafficking.

“The prevention of drug trafficking remains a high priority for the UK and we look forward to continued close collaboration with Ghana,” it stated.

The statement calls into question assertions by NACOB in a statement released early on in the week that said it collaborated with UK officials in the arrest.

The NACOB statement also claimed that UK authorities anticipated the suspect's arrival.

Ms Ametefe was arrested on Monday, November 10, 2014, while going through arrival formalities at the Heathrow Airport.

She had in her possession two suitcases, one of which contained the drug.

Ms Ametefe left the KIA on November 9, 2014 on board a British Airways flight number BA 078 from Accra to London.

She is expected to appear in court in the UK on 27th November over the matter. 

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