…As command rakes in N286.7 billion in 10 months
The Tincan Island Port command of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) has impounded thirty-three (33) containers of rice, one (1) container of rice concealed with spare parts, eleven (11) containers of unregistered Pharmaceutical products, two (2) containers of used tyres, one (1) container of used clothing and four (4) containers of refined vegetable oil in retail packs.
The containers totaling fifty-four (54) comprised of 15×40 feet and 39×20 feet containers with the Duty Paid Value (DPV) of two billion, seven hundred and thirteen million, eight hundred and sixty-five thousand, fifty-one Naira (N2,713,865,051.00).
Speaking shortly after conducting journalists round the seizures, the Comptroller General of the Nigeria Customs Service, Col.Hameed Ali (rtd.) stated that all the containers had been seized in line with the provisions of the Customs & Excise Management Act Cap 45, LFN 2004, Sections 46 and 161 while describing the seizure as one of the many gains of the ongoing partial border closure.
Ali disclosed that some of the rice imported from China and Thailand had Nigerian addresses adding that the Service would be going after those addresses to investigate their connections with the importation of those expired rice.
He mentioned some of the addresses to include; Masters Energy Commodities Trading Limited located at 31A Remi Fani-Kayode Street, GRA, Ikeja,Lagos and 103 Ebitu Ukiwe Street, Jabi, Abuja even as he added that, “we will be going after these addresses and investigate their connections with these expired bags of rice in 33 containers.”
The CG said that one significant finding about the seizures was that all the rice was expired or about to expire stating also remarkable was the seizure of Tramadol variants and unregistered performance enhancing drugs among the pharmaceuticals.
“Recall that in the past, the Service has raised alarm and drew attention of the general public to the fact that most of the imported rice are expired. The Service had also in the past highlighted the dangers of the use of Tramadol and had similarly seized and kick-started the destruction of over N14 billion worth of Tramadol recently.
Gentlemen of the Press, there is no doubt that those who imported these dangerous items do not wish us well. Imagine if they had succeeded in getting the expired rice in and then re-bagged and changed the expiration date for Nigerians to consume. The grave consequences of consuming Tramadol can only be imagined than experienced”, he said.
While restating the resolve of the Nigeria Customs Service and other sister agencies to secure the nation’s land borders from dangerous items, Ali added that “It is a red alert on all entry and exit points in Nigeria.”
The customs boss however commended the officers and men of the Tincan Island port command for a job well done saying, “I am also aware of the command’s contribution to the Service revenue collection drive. Statistics in my office shows that the command has so far collected two hundred and eighty-six billion, seven hundred and forty-two million, five hundred and fifty one thousand, four hundred and forty-three Naira (N286,742,551,443.00) from January 2019 to date. I therefore urge the command to keep up the good work and possibly surpass your target”.
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