FOU Customs recovers over N8.6bn from anti-smuggling operations
Mohammed Uba, Customs Area Controller of Federal Operations Unit, Zone ‘A’
Following its anti-smuggling operations, the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), Federal Operations Unit, Zone ‘A’, said it has intercepted various contraband with a duty paid value (DPV) of N8.2 billion in six months, from January-June 2018.
Also, the unit through its interventions recovered over N405 million from duty payments and demand notices on vehicles and general goods that tried to cut corners from seaports, airports and border stations through wrong classification, transfer of value and underpayment of duty meant for the coffers of the Federal Government of Nigeria.
The recovered revenue brings the total revenue generated by the unit to over N8.6 billion.
A statement signed by Jerry Attah, Public Relations Officer of the unit, said that in the period under review that 107 suspects were arrested in connection to 596 different seizures made by the Unit.
According to him, the seizure comprises 34,652 bags of foreign parboiled rice, equivalent to 58 trailers; 167 units of exotic vehicles including Toyota Prado, Lexus; Toyota C-HR , Toyota Camry LE, Toyota Prado, Toyota Hilux, Ford F150, Pajero Jeeps, Mercedes Benz ranging from 2015-2018 models respectively.
Others include 8,987 cartons of frozen poultry products; 4,586 jerrycans of vegetable oil; 3,463 cartons of different pharmaceutical; 370 parcels and 98 sacks of Indian hemp weighing 1,350kg, as well as other general merchandise.
“Remarkable among the seizures was the interception of 460 sacks of pangolin scales weighing 12, 264kg and 218 elephant tusks. The pangolin and elephant tusk alone is valued at N2.7 billion with two Chinese nationals arrested as suspects, making it the highest seizure of such endangered species in the history of FOU Zone A,” the statement said.
Continuing: “In order to ensure full implementation of the Government policy of banning the importation of rice through land borders, we re-strategised our operational modalities and beam our searchlight at the Creek, Water side, and at various locations in southwest zone and this resulted to massive rice seizure within the period under review,” Mohammed Uba, Customs Area Controller of the unit, said in the statement.
Uba commended the officers for putting their lives on the line while making these seizures. He further thanked other agencies that were always on ground to give the necessary operational support to Unit including, most especially the Nigeria Army, Police, DSS among others.
The controller further charged his officers to be professional and diligent in performing their statutory responsibilities; most especially in the area of anti-smuggling operations by making sure all revenue linkages are blocked.
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