Yuletide: Seme Customs steps up patrol surveillance at border
By Francis Chidiebere
The Seme Area Command of Nigeria Customs Service, NCS, has stepped up security surveillance and patrol at the border between Nigeria and Republic of Benin, in order to check activities of smugglers seeing yuletide period as the best time to carry out illicit trade across the borders.
Financial Business learnt that the latest development at Seme, which is the busiest border within the West African sub-region, is sequel to the massive seizures of over 27 trailers of foreign rice, hard drugs, 21 vehicles comprising of exotic cars and other prohibited items intercepted recently by the Command.
Sources at Seme Area Command revealed that the Customs operatives at the border point are alert always, following the new directives of the current Customs Area Controller, CAC, of the Command, Comptroller Mohammed Uba, who is working tirelessly to curtail smuggling of offensive items into the country through the border, especially this month of December, where commercial activities are o the increase.
When our correspondent visited the Command, it was observed that Seme Customs CAC has brought many positive changes to bear in the operational efficiency of Customs at the border.
Our correspondent also gathered that movement at Seme is no longer business as usual, as the CAC himself is always on the field, even as he has another office at ECOWAS Joint Border Post, where he monitors activities from both sides of the border.
It could be recalled that only last month, Seme Customs show-cased massive seizures of exotic cars, foreign rice, vegetable oil, used tyres, sugar, petroleum products, Tramadol and textile materials intercepted by the Command within a very short period.
Most outstanding among the seized items was a mini-truck fully loaded with smuggled rice underneath the engine compartments, but still uncovered by operatives of Seme Command. Also, seven suspects were arrested in connection with the seizures.