An estimated 460 imports, which comprise allegedly falsely and under-declared items, have been intercepted by the Seme Border Area Command of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS).
The items with a duty paid value (DPV) of N244.9million were allegedly intercepted between January and May 2013.
The Customs Area Controller (CAC), Comptroller Audu Saleh Othman, who disclosed this while briefing visiting members of the Customs Consultative Committee (CCC) at the Command Headquarters in Seme last Thursday, said that the seizures are three times higher than what was recorded by the Command in 2012.
Lamenting the attitude of the border communities, whom he said see smuggling as a way of life, Othman noted that, as part of effort to stem the nefarious act, the Command initiated a monthly meeting with the community leaders to sensitise and call their subjects to order on the need to shun smuggling activities.
“There is no boundary between the border and the communities, so you can imagine what happens here. The border communities don’t know anything other than smuggling, but we have been trying our best to convince them. We normally hold monthly meetings with the community leaders by seeking for their support and cooperation to talk to their people to stop smuggling,” the CAC said.
The Command, according to him, also collected N3.12 billion as revenue generated during the review period.