Customs unit impounds goods worth N936m, arrest 111 suspects in six months

The Federal Operations Unit Zone ‘A’ Ikeja of the Nigeria Customs Service said it recorded an estimated total of 1,608 seizures of assorted prohibited goods during the first half of this year.

In a statement signed by the Public Relations Officer of the unit, Deputy Superintendent of Customs, Uche Ejesieme and sent to SHIPS&PORTS DAILY, the seizures which include rice, frozen poultry products,  vegetable oil,  used tyres, fridges, Spaghetti/noodles and other general goods has a Duty Paid Value (DPV) of N936.3million.

Ejesieme said the figure represents over 50 percent difference when compared with the seizure of the corresponding period of 2013.

He added that the unit also apprehended a total of 111 suspects in connection with the seizures and detentions during the period under review. While some of the suspects are still being investigated by the legal department of the unit, others he said have been charged to courts.

While reiterating the commitment of the unit in ensuring that its effort in actualizing its core mandate of anti smuggling is not jeopardized by some unpatriotic elements whose stock in trade is to circumvent the laws guiding import and export, Ejesieme quoted the former Area Controller of the unit, Comptroller Isa Nuhu as stating that the unit will not relent in making the remaining part of the year tough for smugglers.

He said the unit can boast of rugged and fearless officers who will not be intimidated by the hostile tendencies of smugglers.

“We will go extra mile to deal with the issue of smuggling in view of its adverse effect on the security and economy of the nation. The unit will continue to justify the confidence which the Federal Government reposed on us. The remaining part of the year will witness a further boost in our anti-smuggling initiative. We want to assure compliant importers that they will always receive the support of the unit while those whose stock in trade is smuggling, will have a very hectic moment with our operatives”, Nuhu said.

The Controller noted that the cooperation and mutual understanding enjoyed with other security agencies coupled with the support of the customs management team accounted for some of the seizures recorded by the unit.

“They have provided us with the wherewithal in terms of motivation/remuneration, training and re-training, capacity building, and provision of conducive working environment to the personnel’s of the Service”

He added that the unit has also keyed into the full automation of customs procedures with a robust ASYCUDA section in the unit in line with the CGC’s directives.

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