The Seme Area Command of the Nigeria Customs Service has seized 843 bags of rice concealed in different means of conveyance ranging from petrol tanker to motor vehicles.
A statement by the Public Relations Officer of the Command, Taupyen Selchang, said the seized items had a Duty Paid Value of N5.88m and was made possible through intelligence received by officers.
The statement read in part: “The recent seizures, which were made between Owode and Gbaji, were coordinated by officers attached to those areas.
“With the drastic suppression of the smuggling of imported frozen poultry products through the Command, the Command officers are beaming their searchlight on all travellers and traders across the frontier, as the likelihood of switching to other trans-border crime cannot be written off.”
Selchang added that the Seme Customs Command was doing its best to facilitate legitimate trade across the border and block all revenue leakages that could be detrimental to the goal of revenue generation.
He said: “The Command is hereby advocating for the cooperation of our stakeholders to join hands in sensitising the youth to explore other means of livelihood than smuggling as we approach the last quarter of the year.
“Twice in the month of August, the Command also made seizures of illicit drugs, which have been transferred to our sister agency, the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency, along with two suspects named Olayiwola Olawale and Saheed Ajadi.”
He advised the trading public to shun all antics of defrauding the Federal Government of revenue by concealment, smuggling, false declaration and undervaluation of dutiable goods, and embrace the legitimate way of doing business across the international borders.
By Pita Ochai