The anti-smuggling campaign of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) has yielded more results as its officers and men in the Western Marine Command (WMC), Ibafon, Apapa, Lagos have seized about 575 bags of foreign parboiled rice.
The commodity was intercepted by men and officers of the NCS, who were on a joint patrol with their Nigerian Navy counterparts at the Badagry axis of the Lagos waterways.
Customs Area Controller (CAC), WMC, Comptroller Yusuf Umar, who disclosed this in Lagos, said the officers intercepted two wooden boats loaded with foreign parboiled rice but on sighting the patrol officers, the smugglers escaped into a creek at Itonhu jetty in a bid to escape arrest. According to him, the boat hit a hard surface that broke it and high tidal wave, which resulted in it being sunk with a large quantity of the bags of rice.
Umar explained that the patrol team was able to salvage the remaining bags of rice totaling 575 with a duty paid value (DPV) of N4, 447,625 valued at N2, 616,250 and brought them to the command headquarters.
Though no suspect was arrested in connection with the seizure, the CAC stated that WMC will continue to fight smuggling activities as long as the smugglers refused to turn away from their nefarious activities.
He expressed appreciation to the Comptroller General of NCS, Colonel Hammed Ibrahim Ali (retired) and his management team for very supportive and focused roles and efforts in eradicating smuggling throughout the country.
According to him, this support has been the source of motivation for officers and men of the command. I wish to inform you that the CGC has given this command a commendation letter for our anti-smuggling activities in recent times.
Umar also revealed that the command has so far recorded seizures valued at N263, 094, 300 with a DPV of N269, 632, 075.
The items seized include 505 cartons of foreign frozen poultry products, 48 bales of cannabis weighing 4,500 kilogrammes, 844 bags of imported parboiled rice, and six bags of cannabis.