Seme Customs Evacuates N 57.1m Smuggle Rice

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Seme Customs Evacuates N 57.1m Smuggle Rice
By Udeme Clement
The Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) Seme Area Command has evacuated about 2,300 bags of rice at Gbaji community smuggled into the country illegally through the border region. The seized rice is estimated at the monetary value of N57.1million.
The Public Relations Officer of the Command, Mr. Taupyen Selchang disclosed this in a document signed and made available to Financial Business & Maritime News.
According to him, “Smugglers cannot continue to operate under Customs jurisdiction, using the community as a cover without facing the full wrath of the law. The dare-devil smugglers intended to test the might of the Customs despite the closure of border to movement of illegitimate goods” .
His assertion: “The information-driven operation exposed the illegal activities of those economic saboteurs who would have connived with faceless and recalcitrant officers refusing to heed the clarion call for a reform of the Service. The intention of the smugglers to confront the officers was averted courtesy of the reinforcement and seamless collaboration with the Nigerian Army 243 Reece Battalion Badagry. That practical synergy led to the house to house operation and evacuation of the smuggled items where they were kept.”
“Coincidentally, the operation at Gbaji border community took place the same date scheduled for Customs Community Consultative Forum, in which the Baale of Gbaji border community was in attendance. The Customs Area Controller (CAC) of the Command, Comptroller Mohammed, Aliyu reiterated his appeal for cooperation with the host communities in curbing trans-border crimes”.
Commenting on the successful operation in conjunction with the Nigerian Army, Aliyu commended the effort of Commanding Officer 243 Reece Battalion Col. UB Garba for his prompt response in partnering with the Command to actualise the mandate of the Service. He also appreciated the existing cordial community relations and called on leaders to further sensitise their youths not to join forces with the carriers/smugglers who may not come from their immediate communities to destroy the peaceful co-existence between Customs and the host communities.
The CAC stressed that no amount of intimidation by smugglers to use Seme border route for smuggling activities will be tolerated. He said, “The command will continue to work with the Nigerian Army and the communities, in order to nib the activities of smugglers. We are warning officers and men to desist from conniving with trans-border miscreants who are desperate in their quest for indulging in trans-border crimes at all times.
In the same vein, the Command generated N638million in September, 2017. The anti-smuggling operations unit of the Command also made a total of 21 seizures with a Duty Paid Value (DPV) of N13.5million.

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