The Nigeria Customs Service, Federal Operations Unit (FOU) Zone “C” Owerri, commenced its anti –smuggling activities in 2016 on a good note as it has impounded a number of contraband goods with an overall Duty Paid Value (DPV) of one hundred and forty-five million, one hundred and sixty -five thousand, seven hundred and five naira (N145,165,705).
The Seizures taking place barely two weeks after Comptroller Haruna Mahmud assumed duties as the new head of the unit following the transfer of Comptroller Victor Dimka occurred on the Benin Express Way, the Aba-Eleme –Port Harcourt Road and the Aba-Eleme axis include.
Comptroller Haruna Mahmud while briefing the media on the seizure gave a breakdown as follows : one thousand, five hundred (1,500) cartons of poultry products concealed with scaffolding irons, big empty drums and wheel barrows with a DPV of N21,000,000 and a truck load of 156 jumbo bales of second-hand clothing with a DPV of N26,892,000
According to him, other seized goods are a truck load of fake and unregistered medicaments composed of 190 cartons of Trematoda, 10 bags of sodium lauryl sulphate, 30 bags of potassium Chloride, 10 bags fatty alcohol and 39 bags of sodium citrate with a DPV of N87,298,105 as well as 1,700 pairs of shoes with a DPV of N2,778,000; 115 pieces of used tyres with DPV of N624,000 and assorted foreign soap/cosmetics with DPV of N6,573,600.
Comptroller Haruna Mahmud said that three suspects were arrested in connection with the shady deal.
The FOU Zone C, Area Controller warned Nigerians who are still involved in the act of smuggling to make quick money to desist from the illicit business or be prepared to face the consequences of their action if caught.
He stated that the NCS is poised to ensure zero tolerance for corruption as has been enunciated by the Comptroller-General of Customs Col. Hameed Ibrahim Ali (Rtd.), stressing that smugglers caught would not only be arrested but also prosecuted.
The Comptroller however advised members of the public who are in the notorious habit of consuming imported poultry products to purge themselves of this, stressing that the these consumables which are usually imported through Cotonou and assumed to be cheap are preserved with lethal substances Preservatives meant for preserving dead bodies which makes them harmful and unfit for human consumption.
Comptroller. Haruna while lamenting the continued degeneration of the nation’s economy through certain unconventional means such as smuggling assured that the NCS was now more determined to apply strict measures to block all areas of leakages to meet up with its revenue target.
He advised officers and men of the zone to re-dedicate themselves to duty to meet the requirements of the new administration and its change mantra in the country as there is no more dumping ground in the Nigeria Customs Service.