By Eric Elezuo
The Federal Operations Unit, Zone A of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), has continued to win the war against smuggling and smugglers as it recorded a landmark feat in less than one month, intercepting goods with a total duty paid value (DPV) of N1, 461, 006, 823. 8 in addition to recovering the sum of N166, 207, 735. 25 from duty payments and demand notices on general goods from seaports, airports, and border stations through classification, transfer of value, and other forms of duty payment shortchange.
The revelation was made by the Controller, FOU, Zone A, Comptroller Mohammed Uba, during an interaction with the press at the Unit’s headquarters in Ikeja.
The Controller noted that cumulatively, the Service recovered a total of One Billion, Six Hundred and Twenty Seven Million, Two Hundred and Fourteen Thousand, Five Hundred and Fifty Nine Naira (N1, 627, 214, 559) within the period under review.
While asserting that there is no hiding place for smugglers, he outlined the intercepted goods to include Indian Hemp, 64 exotic vehicles, 6003 bags of foreign parboiled rice, 963 cartons of frozen poultry, 431 cans of vegetable oil, 163 bales of used clothing, 569 pieces of used tyre, 69 sacks of sugar among many other items.
Comptroller Uba stressed that the items were intercepted at different locations at different times within period March 19 and April 9, 2018. He noted that while the parcels and sacks of Indian Hemp were seized at the Olorunda axis of Ogun State, the sacks of 50kg rice were intercepted from Ilogbo, Abeokuta. All interceptions, he said, were based on credible intelligence report, adding that the seized Indian hemp will be handed over to the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA)
He maintained that all smugglers or would-be smugglers will sooner or later be caught, and so should desist from the act for their own good. He added that 10 suspects were arrested in connection to some of the seizures.
“Let me warn all smugglers or intending smugglers and their accomplices to desist from such trade malpractices and invest their money in legitimate businesses as the Unit has devised other operational modalities that will give them a run for their money… and land them in jail,” Uba said.
He expressed appreciation to the Comptroller-General of Customs, Col. Hameed Ali (Rtd), the management team of NCS and men and officers of the unit as well as sister agencies and the press for their various supports.