The Kebbi State Area Command of Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) said it has intercepted skins of 2,820 donkeys slaughtered and packed in 94 jumbo sacks with each containing 30 pieces of donkey skins awaiting transportation to countries outside Nigeria.
The Comptroller General of Customs, Col Hameed Ali (Rtd), Strike Force, Team ‘A’, said it has intercepted and seized smuggled goods worth N390.198 million.
The team also revealed that it intercepted and seized one pump action rifle, one locally made pistol and 14 live cartridges from suspected criminals.
Mohammed Sani Yusuf, Commander of the team, disclosed in Lagos on Wednesday, during a press briefing.
The CGC Team ‘A ‘ Strike Force Commander gave the lists of seizures in addition to arms and ammunition as 1,500 x 50kg foreign parboiled rice, 839 bales of used clothes, 3,525 litres of Premium Motor Spirit(PMS), 900 bags of cement used as means of concealing smuggled rice; 1,670 Mumrite tomato paste, 500 Mumrite Sardine used in concealing the tomato paste and a number of smuggled vehicles.
DC Mohammed warned that illicit goods imported into the Country had their attendant negative effects, adding that they mostly ended up either in our various homes or in the neighbourhood, thus causing a wide range of issues ranging from social to psychological crises.
He said: “It is sad to note that some Nigerians would pay all duties and levies payable to the Customs authorities of other countries they import from, while on the other hand, they made conscious efforts to evade such duty payments into the federal coffers of Nigeria.
“As we are in the last quarter of the year, approaching the yuletide period, where recalcitrant traders and importers’ quest to make more profits through smuggling is at its peak.
“I will use this opportunity to appeal to importers and agents to be patriotic by making sincere declarations and paying their duties accurately.
“Let me use this medium to warn none compliant traders to desist from such because we have strategically mobilized and deployed our personnel to do the needful.
“I wish to reiterate at this point that unpatriotic importers/ agents found culpable shall be dealt with in accordance with the dictates of the law.”
Earlier, in his address, DC Mohammed noted that in continuation of the team’s effort towards suppressing smuggling and preventing revenue loss, within the Southwest region, “officers and men of the Strike Force Team ‘A’ have remained resolute in enforcing Customs extant laws.
“In the course of enforcing these laws, recalcitrant importers and traders were either made to pay the maximum duty payable, through the issuance of Demand Notices (DN) or made to forfeit their goods to the Federal Government by way of seizing them.
“You may recall that foreign tomato paste, used clothing, importation of vehicles through the land borders, used tyres, arms and ammunition without the End-User Certificates among others, are all import prohibitions, which threatens our collectives economy.”