Customs seizes fake pharmaceutical products worth N27m along Abidjan-Lagos corridor
The Seme Customs Command of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) on Wednesday said it’s officials seized unregistered pharmaceutical products with a Duty Paid Value of N27, 861, 538.00 along the Abidjan-Lagos border corridor.
Customs Area Controller of the command, Controller Dera Nnadi mini, while addressing newsmen about the seizure said that the unregistered pharmaceutical products were concealed in a truck with registration number GL 6663 GH belonging to one of the major conglomerates, which name he did not mention.
“On the 9th of May 2023 at about 0830hrs, officers and men of Seme Command of Nigeria Customs Service while conducting stop and search along Abidjan Lagos Corridor intercepted a truck with registration number GL 6663 GH belonging to one of the major conglomerates concealed with some cartons of pharmaceutical products.
“The truck was taken to the station at Seme for proper examination and upon conduct of examination, the following unregistered pharmaceutical products were discovered: MORPHINE SULFATE 100ml x 1076 bottles; AMODIAQUINE SUSPENSION 60ml x 94 bottles; VERMOX 500mg x 2970 packages x 1 sachet x 1 tablet; MEPACRINE TABLETS 100mg x 390 packets x 1000 tablets; CLOFENAC SR 100mg x 298 packets x 10 sachets x 10 tablets; LOSARTAIL POTASSIUM 50mg x 1485 packages x 2 sachets x 28 tablets and VIREST 400 ACICLOVIR tablets. B.P 400mg x 499 packages x 5 sachets x 5 tablets.
“The seized unregistered pharmaceutical products have a Duty Paid Value of N27, 861, 538.00 only”, he said.
Nnadi lamented that aside the economic sabotage, the seized medications poses high risk to the personal and social wellbeing of Nigerians.
“This seizure contravened both Nigeria Customs Service banning the importation of pharmaceutical products through the land border without approval and further contravening NAFDAC laws as they do not have NAFDAC registration numbers. Furthermore, five out of the seven seized pharmaceutical products have expired.
“The Command and indeed every Nigerian is worried about this particular seizure considering the dangerous use of morphine which is a derivate of opium. This drug can be deployed for illicit use to aid criminals.”
The Seme Customs boss stated that the service remain committed to its mandate and will not yield an inch of allowance to the destructive activities of unscrupulous elements.
“Let me reiterate our commitment to fight smuggling under any guise and also states that those trying our resolve will continue to meet their water-loo as we remain resolute at ensuring adequate surveillance of our borders.
“While we draw your attention to this development, recall that, on the 21st of April, 2023, the officer of the Command on a routine patrol along the Abidjan-Lagos Corridor intercepted a Ford Bus conveying Seven (7) large sacks containing five hundred and fifty-three (553) parcels and four suspects were also arrested in connection with the seizure.
“In line with the dictates of the Nigeria Customs Service in the promotion of inter-agency collaboration and synergy, the CGC Col. Hameed Ibrahim Ali Rtd directed that the seized items and two (2) suspects should be handed over to the NDLEA for further investigation.
“To this end, the 553 parcels of Cannabis Sativa and two (2) suspects are today being handed over to NDLEA. Two (2) other suspects had earlier been handed over to the sister security agency for necessary action.”
He thanked the Comptroller General of Customs Col. Hammed Ibrahim Ali (Rtd) and his management for the encouragement and support given to the Command.
“I also give credit for our success to the tireless effort of officers and men of Seme Area Command for their doggedness and of course to you gentlemen of the press for always heeding our call to propagate our message of anti-smuggling to the society.”