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No Nigerian in Pakistani prison on death row

Nigeria’s High Commissioner to Pakistan, Amb. Dauda Danladi, said on Tuesday that none of the 30 Nigerians convicted in Pakistan of drug-related offences is on death row.

Addressing newsmen in Abuja, Danladi said that drug-related offences did not attract capital punishment in Pakistan although the convicts were serving various prison terms.

“Unfortunately because of the access to drugs on the borders of Afghanistan and Pakistan, you find very unscrupulous Nigerians engaged in that illicit trade.

“We have cases of two or three Nigerians that swallowed drugs and died before they reached the airport.

“We are working in close collaboration with the Pakistani High Commission here to scrutinise visa requests by Nigerians to ascertain that only genuine travellers with genuine business commitment go to Pakistan.”

Danladi said no fewer than 700 Nigerians were currently living and working in Pakistan and the high commission had sensitised the Nigerian community to the need to remain law abiding residents in the country.

He said that the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency and the Pakistani narcotic agency were working closely to check illicit drug trafficking.

He added that both countries were considering a Prisoners Transfer Agreement and a Mutual Legal Assistance agreement.

On trade issues, Danladi said the annual bilateral trade between Nigeria and Pakistan had recorded steady increase from 100 million dollars in 2011 to about 500 million dollars in 2014.

He recalled that in 2013, 42 Pakistani industrialists undertook an investment tour of Nigeria and the outcome of that visit was the increased flow of foreign direct investment to the country.

He said that Nigeria and Pakistan had a robust collaboration in the area of security and military training and that senior military chief from both countries had exchanged visits in the past one year.

“Last year, 120 military officers from Nigeria attended various courses in Pakistan military institutions and this year, at least 40 are currently undergoing training in various areas, “he said.

The high commissioner said that Pakistan had a lot of experience in countering insurgency and suggested that Nigeria could leverage on the experience to tackle the security problems it was facing.

He said that two weeks ago, the Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Abubakar, visited Islamabad where he toured the police and military training institutions as well as the ordinances factory.

“Right now we are working on a Memorandum of Understanding on the training of the Nigerian police on counter-insurgency, “he said.

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