The Western Marine Command of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) said that it has impounded various contrabands including scrap metal, narcotics, expired drugs and other prohibited items worth over N430 million between January and October, 2016.
Area Controller of the command, Comptroller Yusuf Umar who stated this in Lagos said the feat was achieved with one of the two sea going vessels acquired by the Service, one gun boat and eleven patrol boats.
While noting that vessels are required tools for optimal performance of the Service, Umar pointed out that activities of smugglers on the nation’s waterways would go unchecked where there are no funds to acquire new vessels or to refurbish existing ones.
He said that was a security risk the nation could not afford to allow hence the acquisition of the two sea -going vessels.
He said with access to fund, the Service would acquire more sea going vessels, gun boats and speed boats, provide heavy duty weapons to combat illegal activities of smuggling, training and re-training of officers and men of the Service to international standard of the International Maritime Organization (IMO) among others.
While stating that security plays a vital role in ensuring fluidity of trade in the maritime sector, the Controller pointed out that the impact of security operations on the nation’s waterways required a combined effort of surveillance, access control, perimeter detection, building technologies on surveillance ships and proper people and processes.
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