Customs intercepts smuggled contraband items

National

The Coordinator Joint Border Drill Operations, North Central Zone, Sector 3, Ilorin, Kwara, Comptroller Olugboyega Peters has announced the seizure of 48 various contraband items with total Duty Paid Value (DPV) of N107.7m by the sector.

Comptroller Olugboyega Peters disclosed this on Wednesday in Ilorin, the Kwara state capital, while briefing journalists on the activities of the Sector within the space of 24 days.

According to him, the seized items include 961 bags of foreign rice concealed in bags of local rice, 33,000 litres of petroleum tanker, and 45 kegs of 25 litres each of petroleum.

Other items seized are 21 bales of second hand clothing, seven new tricycles, 25 cartons/ crates of alcoholic and non alcoholic drinks, 12 used vehicles and 45 motorcycle and tricycle spare parts.

According to him, “smugglers have now invented new means of not just smuggling only foreign parboiled rice of 50kg, but paddy rice in 100kg just to deceive officers.’’

“One of the major highlights of the press briefing is the seizure of five trucks containing 1,677 bags of 100kg each of unprocessed rice around Chikanda/Okuta axis of the Sector worth N18.4m.’’

“This report is an indication of a strong message to those who are not willing to embrace legitimate business. The operatives of Sector 3 will continue to exercise their statutory responsibilities in the interest of overall socioeconomic prosperity of the country.

“The Sector 3 operatives’ zeal and determination to implement the partial closure of our nation’s land borders as directed by Mr. President remains unwavering and we will continue to make the Zone unfavourable to smugglers,’’ he explained.

Comptroller Peters said; “The Yuletide is around the corner, and we want to admonish the smugglers who want to take advantage of the season to smuggle illicit controlled and prohibited goods or engage in human trafficking to think twice, as there will be no hiding place for them due to the new patrol strategies explored by the Sector.

“It is obvious that diehard smugglers are ready to do anything to carry out their nefarious activities: they now use scrap vehicles, tricycles, motorcycles, bicycles to smuggle goods and even they go as far as exhibiting their talents by using bags of local rice to conceal foreign parboiled rice with the intention to deceive our operatives.

”He commended the patriotic collaboration and tremendous assistance they always receive from traditional rulers, eminent personalities and some host communities in their resolute drive against smuggling in the overall interest of the nation.

Comptroller Peters also appreciated the Comptroller-General of Customs, Colonel Hameed Ibrahim Ali (Rtd) and his management team for believing in their ability to carry out their national assignment.

VON

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