The Nigeria Customs Service, Adamawa/Taraba Command said it has seized contraband goods worth N13,749,110.35 with the resolute and combative efforts of the Command with regards to the battle against smuggling activities in the region.
The Customs Area Controller (CAC), Comptroller Salisu Kazaure Abdullahi made this known during a press briefing in Yola on Friday.
He said the resolute and untiring efforts of the Command’s operatives is geared towards ensuring that the core mandate of the service revenue generation,trade facilitation and suppression of smuggling amongst others is hugely achieved.
Comptroller Salisu said the Command has repositioned officers across all its territorial borders.
In his word, “the result of these unwavering efforts of the enforcement units of the service had really translated into a huge success of the numerous seizures of items recorded hitherto.
“This is invariably predicated on the intelligence sharing, synergy and gallantry efforts of our operatives.
“In the Month under review, the Command had recorded (19) nineteen seizures of assorted items with Duty Paid Value (DPV) of Thirteen Million,Seven Hundred and Forty Nine Thousand, One hundred and Ten naira and Thirty Five Kobo only (N13,749,110.35).
The seized items include the following:
i. 19 cartons of foreign insecticide
ii. 26 x 50kg bags of foreign parboiled rice and
iii. 15,449 litres of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) packed in 17 x 200L drums, 475x25L and 6 x 35L Jerry Cans respectively.
Furthermore, the CAC said the intelligence report has revealed that the smuggling of the product to the West African sub-region still persists. This is owing to the facts that the Country’s PMS is of high quality and some of the products could be illegally sourced.
“It is worthy to note that, sometimes the smugglers and those who patronize them only take cognisance of the quality of the PMS and greatly undermine the comparative cost. Illicit source and trade on crude oil and its by-products had inflicted remarkable economic losses on Nigerians and lawful stakeholders in the oil and gas industry.
On the account of the inflammable nature of the Premium Motor Spirit (PMS), most of it had been disposed of in accordance with the extant laws and the accrued proceed remitted into the Federation Account. The fraction of the PMS remaining here on ground will as well be auctioned immediately after this briefing.
According to him, the seizure of the PMS is on the account of the contravention of section 246 of the Nigeria Customs Service Act 2023 and considering the facts that the territorial borders of the Command still remain officially closed.
He added that, immediately after this conference, we will conduct and witness the destruction of the seized raw donkey skin that was earlier apprehended by the enforcement units of the service on the 1st September 2023 at Sahuda, Nigeria- Cameroon border.
“This destruction would be done in accordance with schedule number 15 of Nigeria Customs Service Act, 2023, the same way some of us here had witnessed the destruction of the illicit and counterfeit drugs yesterday, 16th November, 2023.
The CAC disclosed that none of the smugglers was arrested as they were overrun,fled and abandoned the items. When overrun by our enforcement units, the smugglers always prefer to abandon their smuggled goods and flee in order to escape prosecution.
“I want to bring to the notice of the general public that the Command has vowed to clamp down on all smugglers, maintaining that the Nation cannot afford to allow saboteurs take over the Nation’s economy.
“On this note I implore all the patriotic Nigerians, stakeholders and all relevant security agencies at the Command’s frontiers to continue to collaborate with the Customs in the battle against this menace of smuggling as this fight is not a one man business.
The CAC urged officers and Men of the Command, to remain resolute and maintain the tempo in the fight against the menace of smuggling activities across the borderlines and ensure that smuggling operations become a difficult venture for those engaged in it and those intending to go into it.
Finally, ‘i want to use this medium to appreciate and thank the Controller General of Customs, Bashir Adewale Adeniyi and his Management team for providing the Command with additional operational vehicles.
Comptroller Salisu said, the presence of these vehicles had strengthened the efforts of the operatives in the area of combating the smuggling activities more effectively in the command and had yielded great success in terms of the seizures recorded in the period under review.
He added that the Command will not rest on its oars until the menace of smuggling is significantly suppressed.