The Onne Port Command of the Nigeria Customs Service, NCS has said that it has collected the sum of Fifty-Four Billion, Nine hundred and Ninety-Two Million, One hundred and Twenty-Three thousand, Six hundred and Eighty-Seven naira, Fifteen kobo (₦54,992,123,687.15) as revenue between the months of January and March 2023.
The Customs Area Controller of the command, Comptroller Baba Imam who disclosed this in a press briefing at the Command’s headquarters in Onne, Rivers State on Tuesday observed that the amount translated to 16.3 percent of the Three Hundred and Thirty – Six Billion Naira (N336,000,0000,000) target set for the command by the Customs headquarters.
Imam further stated that the amount, when compared to the same period last year, showed that the Command had an increase in revenue of One billion, One hundred and Thirty-Two Million, Nine hundred and Twenty-Five Thousand, Five Hundred and Fifty-Six Naira, Eighty-Two Kobo (₦1,132,925,556.82).
According to him, “This figure realized is in spite of not having vessels berth in Onne Port for some time due to the election atmosphere. We look forward to continuous rise in revenue generation in the coming months as we expect vessels to berth on our coastline within the next few weeks.”
While pointing out that it had been a harvest of seizures since his assumption of duty in the command in January this year, justifying the committed resolve of the command to facilitating only legitimate trade in line with the provision of extant laws, he said, “This is made visible with the display of a total number of 27 containers which comprises, 26 seized containers and one detained container for violations or contraventions of various customs laws and breach of procedures as provided under the revised import prohibition guidelines (by trade) Schedule 3, Article 4 of the Common External Tariff 2022-2026, as well as Sections 46 Paragraph (b), (d), (e), (f) and 169 of Customs and Excise Management Act Cap C45, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004 as amended.”
The Controller revealed that those seizures and detention were made based on infractions related to import guidelines, which includes: contraband goods, false declaration, end user certificate requirement from the office of the National Security Adviser as well as NAFDAC permit/license among others in line with the Federal Government fiscal policies.
Giving the breakdown of the seizures, he said, “The seized items are as follow: Twenty-Four (24) containers laden with refined vegetable oil comprising a total of 24,860 gallons of 25 and 10 litres La-Jonic vegetable oil. i.e (19,800 gallons of 25 litres and 5,060 gallons of 10 litres) with Duty Paid Value of ₦833,172,538.42. (Based on false declaration and contravention of Schedule 3 Article 4 of C.ET).
“Also seized were other two (2) containers laden with 1,165 cartons of Analgin injection and Fireworks with other items. i.e (286 cartons of Analgin injection I.M.V) (2/5g/5ml) (Based on contravention of revised import prohibition guideline), 210 cartons of Banga, 273 cartons of W.Tail, 216 cartons of Coloured flowers, 180 cartons of Pops (Based on absence of End user certificate). The total Duty Paid Value for the two (2) containers is ₦94,652,168.39. Put together, the total Duty Paid Value of the 26 seized containers stands at ₦94,652,168.39.
“The seized cartons of Analgin injection will be handed over to NAFDAC today in the spirit of interagency collaboration. We shall continue to build on this robust relationship with other sister agencies to rid the society off criminal elements that are working against the interest of the country. Similarly, one 20 ft container of machete was detained on documentation grounds pending provision of End user Certificate.”
He, however underscored the necessity and imperativeness of synergy, collaboration and intelligence sharing noting that the seizures above were made purely with intelligence gathered and 100% physical examination.
“Nevertheless, I want to state here that investigation is still ongoing through our legal/intelligence unit to arrest the culprits and bring them to book as soon as possible”, the Controller added while insisting that importation of certain controlled items like Fireworks and machete required End-User Certificate which he said was under the purview of the Office of the National Security Adviser.
“Such importations without the Certificate are to be seized and forfeited to the Nigerian Government, he stated.
Comptroller Imam informed that the seized containers would be filed for condemnation at the federal High Court, Port Harcourt Division and shall subsequently be forfeited to the Federal Government.
Photo: Comptroller Baba Imam, Customs Area Controller, Onne Port Command of the Nigeria Customs Service during the press briefing at Onne, Rivers State today.
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