From Oluseye Ojo, Ibadan
The Oyo/Osun Command of the Nigeria Customs Service has impounded 221 cartons of imported dry fish with duty paid value (DPV) of N20,427,291, and another nine sacks of imported dry fish with DPV of N10,971 between February 1 and April 20.
Briefing reporters in Ibadan, the Oyo State capital, on Thursday, the Customs Area Controller for the Command, Mr Adamu Abdulkadir, said the Oyo/Osun Command also confiscated 3,311 bags of foreign parboiled rice of N50 kilogrammes each with DPV of N89,309,324 and 487 kegs of Premium Motor Spirit (petrol) of 25 litres each with DPV of N2,906,775.
Daily Sun gathered that the cartons and bags of the imported fish were being imported to Nigeria from the Gambia through the borders of Oyo State. Abdulkadir, however, said there was no need to import such fish at a time that the Federal Government has not opened the borders of the state to such trade. A carton that was opened for reporters was filled with dry tilapia.
Within the three months, the Area controller said the command also generated N15,890,489,479.26, which is the cumulative import duty from bonded terminals, excise duty from factories under excise net, auction fees, and all other ancillary charges into both federation and non-federation accounts.
The Oyo/Osun Command also confiscated nine sacks of Cannabis Sativa with DPV of N1,440,180; six bales of used shoes with DPV of N288,294; 10 gallons of vegetable oil of 10 liters each with DPV of N1,903,710; another 572 gallons of vegetable oil of 2.5litres each with DPV of N2,367,222; 21 bales of second-hand clothing with DPV of N4,945,020 as well as a used DAF truck with DPV of N11,878529, totaling N134,477,316.
Abdulkadir, who showered encomium on Governor Seyi Makinde of Oyo State for his magnanimity and support in the donation of two units of JAC LHD 4×4 Pick U to enhance the operations of the command in keeping the borders safe, stated: ‘We have carried out our enforcement and anti-smuggling activities with the utmost professionalism, caution, and intelligence. We urge the public to cooperate with the Nigeria Customs Service in the implementation of government fiscal policies to help improve the economic and social welfare of the nation.
‘The Comptroller-General of Customs, Col Ibrahim Hameed Ali (rtd) has directed more stringent measures to further strengthen the interception capabilities of customs officers in corroboration with the extant laws and regulations, guiding import and export procedures of the country, while reiterating that the Oyo and Osun States borders remain closed to any form of inward or outward trade.’
Abdulkadir also read the riot act to the people that have been ‘blocking or attacking our officers, preventing them from making required arrests and seizures in your communities, be rest assured that we shall fish you out and prosecute you under Section 11 of the CEMA Cap C45 LFN 2004.’