Seme Customs Command generates N963m in Sept — Official

The Seme Command of Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) on Thursday, said it generated N963.7 million revenue in September.

Mr Ernest Olottah, spokesman for the command told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Seme, that the revenue was N182 million higher than the N781 million generated in August.

He attributed the increase to higher trading activities and reduction of smuggling activities in the area.

“In the Month of September, the command generated higher revenue because trading activities were very high than the previous months.

“Willy Egbudin, the Customs Area Controller of the command, is deploying all personnel and available logistics to intensive vehicular and foot patrols along the border lines and all routes including non-motorable areas.

“These patrols and other anti-smuggling activities are paying off as unrepentant smugglers are fleeing the area.

“Also, we are heading towards the tail end of the year so trading activities would increase and this would enable us to surpass our monthly target of N1.1 billion,’’ he said.

He revealed that the revenue generated in the month of September was the highest monthly collection made by the command between 2013 and 2014.

Olottah assured that the command would realise the N13 billion revenue target for the current year.

“The command also made 31 seizures in the month under review,’’ the spokesman said.

According to him, the items seized include rice, vehicles, narcotics, frozen poultry products and general goods.

He, however,  added that the command did not arrest any suspects.

Olottah urged Nigerians to desist from smuggling because of its adverse effects on the nation’s economy.

“We will keep this tempo into and beyond the forthcoming yuletide season and close tie with the border communities under a reinforced Customs Community Relations Forum.

“This will be sustained as we are employing enlightenment and persuasion as tools for zero casualties in achieving our anti-smuggling drive.

“We are happy that some traditional rulers, community chiefs, youth leaders and residents of border communities are cooperating with us in the strive to protect our national economy and ensure security of our people.

“We also are in close liaison with the Port Health Service, other government and non-government bodies to sustain Nigeria’s Ebola free status.

“Aside the regular check of travellers and traders moving along our border route, we also ensure that our operatives adhere to all anti Ebola directives,’’ he said.