By DAPO OLAWUNI
The Acting Controller, Federal Operations Unit (FOU) Zone ‘A’ of the Nigeria Customs Service, Hussein Kehinde Ejibunu has announced that the unit intercepted assorted items including 3,116 pieces of cutlasses, 162 (96kg) parcels of Indian hemp, 7,403 bags of 50kg of foreign parboiled rice among others.
Speaking at a press briefing in Ikeja Lagos on Wednesday, the customs boss gave the other breakdown of the seizures to include; 53,759 litrs of petroleum motor spirit, 121 cartons of frozen poultry product, 724 bales of used second hand clothings and 3 units of used motorcycles
Others are; 97 pieces of used tyres, 11 kegs of 25 litres of vegetable oil, 13 units of used fridges, 700 rolls of cigarettes, 23 cartons of dates, 9 units of vehicles
and 2 1×40 containers of charcoal
According to the Customs boss, 11 Suspects were arrested in connection with some of the seizures and
are at various stages of investigations.
He noted that these seizures are worth a total duty paid value (DPV) of N671,609,384.5
and were seized along the border and port corridors within the South west Zone.
Ejibunu said “Having understood the unrepentant nature of some economic
saboteurs’ increased desperation to smuggle and their quest to acquire wealth ahead of the festive period, this Unit had remained resolute in enforcing compliance with the federal government fiscal policies, Customs and Excise laws. While doing this, we have evolved better strategies of being ahead of them; not only to seize their wares, but to get them arrested and prosecuted.
“Let me remind you that smuggling in whatever guise or form, is an illegal activity that constitutes a crime against Customs extant laws. Primarily among other effects; smuggling compromises national security, robs the nation of her revenue, which consequently affects the provision of basic amenities and social services to the citizens, and it can also destroy your health through the importation of expired, fake, and other illicit drugs”
“This achievement was possible with the enabling powers of
sections: 158 (power to patrol freely), sections 160 – 163 (failure to pay duty on demand, untrue declarations, counterfeiting documents, false scales, etc) of the Customs and Excise Management Act (CEMA), Cap C45
Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004 as amended”
“Cumulative revenue recovery within the period under review is
N42,320,098.00 this amount would have been lost to individuals, if not
for the diligent and meticulous documentary checks by officers of this Unit.
“May I use this opportunity to appeal to the trading community to be patriotic by making sincere declarations, and paying the maximum duties/levies payable to the federal government. Anyone found culpable of the aforementioned would lead to economic loss and prosecution as
prescribed by the extant laws” he stated