The Federal Operation Unit, Zone ‘C’ of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), Federal said it recorded a total of 231 seizures of contraband goods with a Duty Paid Value (DPV) of N1.9 billion in the third quarter of the year 2016.
In a statement made available to SHIPS & PORTS DAILY, Public Relations officer of the command, Ifeoma Onuigbo said the seizures recorded is in contrast to the 379 seizures with a DPV of N2.2billion impounded in the corresponding period of 2015.
The statement quoted the Controller of the Unit, Comptroller Haruna Mamudu, as saying that said that the underpayment of N548.7 million recovered in the review period amounted to an increase in the percentage of revenue generated by the NCS as against to the N105.2 million underpayment recovered in 2015.
He said 22 suspects were arrested in connection with the seizures which were impounded on the Benin axis, Asaba-Agbor-Onitsha express way, Calabar, Enugu, Owerri and Port-Harcourt axis of the South-South and South -East Zones of the federation, while 16 cases are pending in court.
Comptroller Haruna said that the feat was successfully accomplished as a result of the renewed determination of the Comptroller-General of Customs Col. Hameed Ibrahim Ali (Rrtd.) to rid the country of all forms of illegal importation.
He gave a breakdown of the items impounded to include 121 vehicles; 3,082 bags of 50kg rice; 1,454 cartons /set of furniture; 5,120 pieces of used foreign tyres; 625 cartons of fake medicaments and 2,600 pieces of imported school bags.
Also seized were 63 containers of log of wood; 97 pieces of 14 -stroke engine generator; 30,181 cartons imported frozen poultry products; 1,148 bales of second hand clothing as well as 2, 331 cartons of foreign detergents and creams.
Others are 1,339 pairs of foot wears; 142 pieces of used refrigerators and compressors, 155 cartons of plastic and articles of plastics; 129 cartons of ceramics and articles of ceramics in addition to 803 bags of scrap metals.
Comptroller Haruna, who expressed concern at the continued indulgence of some Nigerians in the nefarious act of smuggling despite official stiff penalty for culprits arrested said that the NCS would remain resolute and undeterred in its efforts to stamp out the scourge in the country, stressing that the Service is always well equipped, mobilized and motivated to dislodge smugglers, their collaborators and agents where ever they hibernate.
The Controller, therefore warned all die hard smugglers who are still trapped in the illegal business to purge themselves of this before the long arm of the law catches up with them.
He also renewed appeal to members of the public with useful information about smugglers to always make such information available to his men or to other sister security agencies for necessary action, assuring that the identity of such informers will never be disclosed.
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