The police high command in Kaduna has apprehended no fewer than 34 persons comprising 20 men, 12 women and two minors from villages around Kaduna metropolis at the weekend for exhuming over 6,000 cartons of contraband frozen chicken and other related poultry products worth over N35 million.
The arrested persons, who came from Mando and Buruku villages exhumed the chicken barely 48 hours after the Nigeria Customs Service, Federal Operations Unit, Zone B, had destroyed, burnt and buried the contraband poultry products.
The customs had carried out the destruction of the frozen chicken in the presence of officials of Kaduna State Police Command, Kaduna State Environmental Protection Agency (KEPA) and some newsmen at the dump site designated by KEPA along Birnin Gwari/Kaduna Highway last Thursday.
Parading the suspects before newsmen in Kaduna, the police public relations officers, DSP Zubairu Abubakar, said the suspects were arrested following information to the police that some persons from the neighbouring villages were exhuming contraband frozen chicken buried by the Nigeria Custom Service.
He said, “These are the suspects we have arrested in connection with exhuming of frozen chickens buried by the operatives of the Nigeria Customs. The chickens were buried at state government approved dump site along Buruku/Kaduna road in conjunction with KEPA.
“We got information that people were exhuming the contraband chickens that were buried and we rushed there and arrested about 34 suspects, they are with us.
“So far, we have charged them for consumption and sale of adulterated food and drinks.”
Also, commenting on the arrest, the public relations officer of customs, Zone B, Idris Ado, warned members of the public to beware of frozen chickens that must have found their way into the market, saying that they are not fit for human consumption.
Ado said, “As you are all aware, we carried out the destruction of contraband frozen chicken last Thursday at a dump site provided by KEPA, and in the cause of destroying these products, the following organisations were invited to witness the destruction: the director of the State Security Service was represented, the Nigeria Police was represented, officials of KEPA were there and members of the press also witnessed the destruction. Unfortunately we got the information that some unscrupulous Nigerians went there to exhume them and evacuated some of the chickens to the market.These chickens are not good for human consumption because they contain some toxic chemicals.
“They have taken them to the town, but we are lucky that officers and men of the police were handy to arrest these suspects. So we are calling on the public to beware of these products because they are not fit for human consumption”.
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