Onne Customs seize consignment of Tramadol
Barely a week after resumption of clearing activities following a strike action by customs agents to protest alleged customs high handedness, the Nigeria Customs Service, Area ll Command Onne Port said it has uncovered a total of one thousand, three hundred and eighty-seven, 1387, cartons of Tramadol tablets.
A statement by the Command Public Relations Officer, Ifeoma Onuigbo Ojekwu, quoted the Customs Area Controller (CAC), Compt. Auwal Mohammed saying the offensive items was found in 1x40ft container with registration number MRKU0764717, concealed with 1000 cartons of ceramic tiles.
Mohammed further explained that the drugs were packed in 120mg capsule, 20 sachets per pack, 18 packs per carton, even as he attributed the interception to a network of intelligence gathering.
While adding that the items have been transferred to the Government Warehouse for 100% physical examination, the CAC reiterated the command’s resolve that no consignment will be released without due diligence based on 100 percent physical examination.
This is even as he assured that the importer, agent and their collaborators would be uncovered in the course of ongoing investigation, and further assured that all those responsible will be prosecuted in a competent court of law.
His words, “We are always ready to conduct 100 percent examination. We will not be pushed to do anything in a hurry as the clearance procedure is well explained.
“Hundred percent physical examination is one of the key aspects of the clearance procedure in Nigeria. Therefore, all importers should know that making unclear or false electronic declaration does not mean they will have an easy way out with their consignment.
“Every container that arrive Onne Port must be subjected to 100 percent examination after relevant duties and charges have been paid and necessary procedures followed. But no compromise to examination and all cargoes must be examined. And this is one of the results you are seeing here.”
Speaking on the ingenuity deployed in concealing the drugs, he said, “Ordinarily, you can see that the same carton used to package the ceramic tiles is what was used to package the tramadol. So if you are just doing ordinary surface examination, you will assume that the whole container is laden with ceramic tiles.
“But because of the meticulous way we conduct our examination, we are able to separate between the items used for concealment; which is the ceramic tiles and the actual intent, cargo or consignment being imported.”