The Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) Federal Operations Unit, Zone A, Lagos on Thursday reported that it impounded contraband goods with Duty Paid Value, DPV, of N4.6 billion.
The Acting Customs Area Comptroller, Hussein Ejibunu, who made this disclosure to journalists, said the seized items comprised 9,697 bags of rice at 50kg each, 3,173 cartons of basmati rice at 5kg each and 297 bags (25kg) Foreign Parboiled Rice and 1,076 kegs at 25 litres of Petroleum Motor Spirit, PMS.
He listed the other contraband items seized by the Service as including 195 bales of used clothes, 51 parcels (39.5KG) Indian hemp, 68 sacks of used clothes, 2,535 pieces of used tyres and 17 units of used vehicles.
Ejibunu also hinted that are 206 used compressors, 7,557,400 tablets of 225mg Tramadol, seven units of used motorcycles, 21 bales of new bed sheet and 57 units used plasma TV were also impounded by the officers and men of the Service during their anti-smuggling operations.
According to the Area Comptroller, 23 suspected smugglers were arrested in connection with the crime, out of whom five were given administrative bail and 18 of the suspects still being detained in the unit’s custody.
He, however, lamented that in the course of anti-smuggling operations in 2021, four officers serving in the unit died.
Speaking further on the Unit’s operations last year, Ejibunu said the Unit recovered a total N192 million from various malpractices in import duties.
The Area Comptroller restated that the Unit’s officers and men’s anti-smuggling and revenue recovery efforts would be intensified in the current year even as he thanked the NCS management for the logistics upgrade the command recorded in 2021.