FOU Zone ‘A’ Lands 91 Seizures In August Worth N813m
BY FUNMI ALUKO
The Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) Federal Operations Unit Zone ‘A’ said it made a total of 91 seizures in the month of August 2023, with 12 suspects in connection with some of the seizures which comprise of 6,911 x 50kg bags of Foreign Parboiled Rice (equivalent of 11 truck-loads).
The seized items with a cumulative Duty Paid Value (DPV) of N813,058,345 includes 345kg of Indian Hemp, 486 cartons of frozen poultry products and 368 pieces of used tyres, 394 cartons of Codeine, 13 used vehicles (Tokunbo vehicles) 32 cartons of expired batteries, 1 X 40 ft container FTC, one used Toyota Corolla and 49 pieces of car rims.
Others are; 552 pieces of car used tyres, 205 pieces of used truck tyres and 32 pieces of motorcycle tyres. 292 bales of Used Clothes, as well as 13,525 litres of Premium Motor Spirit.
The Unit Controller, Deputy Comptroller Kehinde Hussein Ejibunu said officers and men of the unit are resolute in ensuring that those who do not mean well for the nation are challenged, stopped, arrested and prosecuted, while recovering all recoverable duty that would otherwise have been lost to duty evasion through false declarations and sharp practices.
“In demonstrating the commitment of the Service towards safeguarding the nation’s economy from recalcitrant saboteurs; officers and men of the Unit have remained resolute in enforcing the Customs extant laws. While enforcing these laws, dubious importers and traders were either made to pay the maximum duty payable, through the issuance of demand notices or made to forfeit their goods to the Federal Government by way of seizing them.
“You may recall that foreign tomato paste, used clothing, foreign parboiled rice, importation of vehicles through the land borders, used tyres, arms and ammunition without end-user certificates among others, are items that fall under the import prohibition list; their importation threatens our fragile economy.
“Similarly, the importation of foreign parboiled rice and poultry products is an adversary to the economy of the local farmers.
“Smuggling of prohibited items such as used shoes, illicit drugs, used clothes and used tyres are giving serious health concerns.
“On our part, we shall continue to partner with well-meaning citizens by soliciting for timely and useful information to curb smuggling. While we advise members of the public to be guided by the Import and Export Prohibition Lists for compliance.
“It is sad to note that some Nigerians would pay all duties and levies payable to the Customs authorities of other countries they import from, while they make conscious efforts to evade such payments into the federal government coffers.”
On the administration of debit notes (DN), the anti-smuggling czar said, “It is sad to note that some Nigerians would pay all duties and levies payable to the Customs authorities of other countries they import from, while they make conscious efforts to evade such payments into the federal government coffers.
“On revenue recovery, the sum of N81,449,373.38 was made through documentary checks and issuance of demand notices on consignments that were found to have been short-paid.”
Ejibunu also warned about the dangers of increased criminalities vide the use of illicit substances and warned those engaged in the distribution of sativa cannabis known in local parlance as wee-wee or marijuana to desist.
“The attention of the public is hereby drawn to the dangers posed by the importation of Indian Hemp (Cannabis Sativa) because of its effect on criminal minded people and our youths.”
While appreciating the CGC Bashir Adewale Adeniyi MFR and his management team for additional logistics support to the unit which includes two (2) trucks for the evacuation of seizures and a towing truck, he also thanked patriotic Nigerians he said have assisted with useful information in fighting smuggling.
“I am using this medium to thank all patriotic Nigerians that provided useful information that led to some arrests, and also the compliant traders and importers for complying with the extant laws, while the recalcitrant ones are advised to stop because it is a crime.”