By AUSTIN OWOICHO, Abuja
The controller, Niger /Kogi Area Command of the Nigeria Customs Yusuf Abba Kassim has said that the command initiated new anti-smuggiling strategies to tackle the smuggling activities within the command.
The controller said the new strategy which led to remarkable exploits evidenced in the seizures of one Iveco fourteen (14) tyre truck with two different registration plate numbers XD 146 LSD (in front) and XD 146 SLD (behind), loaded with two hundred and Ninety-Two (292) 50kg bags of imported rice concealed with sugarcane in order to beat our officers on routine patrol. This was intercepted along Dikko-Suleja-Abuja road of Niger State.
The Area controller, Yusuf Abba Kassim, who stated this in a press briefing in Minna, said, the above seizures within the commands area of coverage with the duty paid value of the rice valued at N4,964,000. “It is unfortunate that despite the considerable quantity of Rice and Vehicular seizures in this Command in the past, some saboteurs have continued to engage in the unpatriotic act of smuggling. If you recall barely two weeks ago the Command intercepted a diesel truck loaded with 197(50kg) bags of imported rice with duty paid value of N3,349,000.
“We have continued to record victory over these recalcitrant saboteurs, last month (October) the Command re-sharpened intelligence network led to an arrest of five (5) seizures comprising:a. 1,481 (50kg) bags of imported foreign rice with DPV of N25,177,000.b. Five (5) vehicles with DPV of N14,337,000.
c. Nine (9) bales of Second hand clothing with DPV of N720,000.” He said these above seizures were made at different locations within the Command namely: Wawa, Babanna, New Bussa axis in Borgu Local Government Area, Tungankawo, Tunganwawa axis in Kontagora Local Government Area, Mokwa, Kudu, Kpaki axis in Mokwa Local Government Area and Bagama, Dikko junction axis in Suleja Local Government of Niger State.
The estimated value was pegged at over forty million (40m) Naira, which represents a huge loss on the part of these elements despite the fact of a jail term that awaits any of them who will be arrested as a result of our long drawn investigative net.
He added ”We shall continue to blaze the trail in anti-smuggling activities through the deployment of intelligence gathering and collaboration/synergy with other critical stakeholders for the actualization of our statutory mandate.
” These deliberate and concerted efforts will guide us in contributing our quota toward realizing remarkable results in line with the Vision and Mission of the Comptroller General of Customs and His Management Team.”