Owerri Customs records N385million seizures
.Intercepts 3 bulletproof vehicles
By Michael Chisom & Udeme Clement
The Nigeria Customs Service, NCS, Federal Operations Unit, FOU, Zone ‘C’ Owerri continues to live up to its responsibilities of tackling smuggling and generating revenue for the Federal Government. The Unit made seizures of twelve vehicles and 881 bags of rice, with Duty Paid Value, DPV, of over N385 million.
The new Customs Area Controller, CAC, of the Unit, Comptroller Olusemire Kayode, made this known while showcasing seizures made by officers in Benin axis, said that the seizures were as a result of hard work and diligence of officers of the Unit.
Financial Business learnt that three among the exotic cars seized are bulletproof vehicles. The CAC explained that the bulletproof vehicles on interception did not have documentation and appropriate permit from the National Security Adviser, for importation of such vehicles into the country.
The CAC advised importers of such cars to pay appropriate duties and shun duty evasion. “Most of these vehicles worth millions of naira. If they could afford to buy these vehicles, they should not evade paying the duty,” he said.
He reassured that the Unit’s anti-smuggling operations would not go down under his watch and the antics of smugglers must be thwarted in zone ‘C’. He also urged importers to acquaint themselves with extant laws governing trade in the country, to avoid running afoul of the law.
Displaying the rice seizures, Comptroller Olusemire gave details of consignment of rice concealed underneath heaps of banana in a truck. He explained that officers were not in the habit of hindering local traders on their daily business. However, the officers acting on a tip off, checked the vehicle and discovered the infraction.
He sounded a note of warning to smugglers and urged Nigerians to support government’s policy on local rice production for industries to thrive. He further stated that the ban on rice importation through land borders is still in force, urging the public to patronise locally produced goods, in order to boost agriculture development.
With inter-agency cooperation, support of the media and public, the CAC is positive that smuggling would be brought to the bare minimum.
A breakdown of the seizures include:
Range Rover Autobiography 2014 model with duty paid value of N76,423,500-
Toyota Land Cruiser Bullet proof 2016 model with duty paid value of N40,105,545-
Toyota Land cruiser Bullet proof 2014 model with duty paid value of N33,145,079-
Mercedes Benz G-wagon bullet proof 2017 model with duty paid value of N68,554,565-
Mercedes Benz GLE 450 2016 model with duty paid value of N26,032,239-
Toyota Rav 4 201-4 model with duty paid value of N9,728,505
Toyota Highlander 2017 model with duty paid value of N19,590,110-
Toyota Hilux 2017 model with duty paid value of N15,413,996-
Lexus ES350 2008 model with duty paid value of N4,510,391-
Toyota Corolla 2014 mo-del with duty paid value of N7,229,250
Ford Edge 2015 model with duty paid value of N16,835,891-
741 Bags of 50Kg foreign rice with duty paid value of N18,969,600-
Ford Transit Bus carrying 100 Bags of 50Kg foreign rice with total DPV of N4,060,000-
Ford Transit Bus carrying 40 Bags of 50Kg foreign rice with total DPV of N2,524,000