The Nigeria Customs Service, Federal Operations Unit, Zone ‘A’ Ikeja of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), has said that its anti-smuggling operations intercepted various contraband with a duty paid value (DPV) of 4,004,258,331.52 between January to December 2017.
In a statement issued by the Public Relations Officer of the Zone, Mr Jerry Attah, the Command revealed that “The unit through its interventions recovered N1,956,022,531.65 from duty payments and demand notices on general goods that tried to beat the system from seaports, airport and border stations through wrong classification, transfer of value, and shortchange in duty payment that are meant for the Federal Government of Nigeria, making a cumulative of 5,960,280,863.00 in the year 2017”.
“Looking at 2017 under review, 179 suspects were arrested in connection to these 1,046 different seizures comprising foreign parboiled rice, frozen poultry products, vegetable oil, smuggled vehicles, Indian hemp, arms, fake pharmaceutical/medicaments and various general merchandise.
In his remarks, the Controller, Federal Operations Unit Zone ‘A’, Comptroller Mohammed Uba Garba said “Despite the challenges in 2017 recorded the highest seizures and revenue so far in the history of Federal Operations Ikeja. He attributed this feat to leadership of the Comptroller General of Customs, Col. Hameed Ibrahim Ali (Rtd) and the entire Management Team of the Nigeria Customs Service for their efforts in recognizing hard work and putting square begs in square holes. Without the Management motivation and necessary logistic support, we won’t have achieved this feat within this period”.
Uba, who commended the commitment and diligence of the Officers and Men of the FOU ‘A’ for thwarting the antics of some dare devil smugglers, further charged his officers to be professional and diligent in performing their statutory responsibilities in the year 2018; most especially in the area of anti-smuggling operations by making sure all revenue linkages are blocked.
He therefore enjoined all hands to be on deck in the fight against these economic saboteurs who mean no good for the economy, stressing that smuggling is a global phenomenon, which cannot be curbed entirely but can be brought to its barest minimum.
He appreciated all security and sister agencies (Nigerian Army, Nigeria Police, NDLEA, NAFDAC, SON) that rendered logistics support and cooperation towards winning the war against smuggling within the southwest zone.
Uba also sent warning signals to all would be smugglers and their accomplices to desist from such illegality and invest their money in legitimate business, saying, the Unit has devised other operational modalities that give them a run for their money and count their losses, if not jailed. The Zone A boss explained further that “For the avoidance of doubt, the Federal Government policy banning the importation of Vehicles and Rice through the land borders is still in force and we are ever ready and equipped to enforce these polices to the latter”.