(Written by Silas Onuoha):
The Ogun 1 Command of Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), has made significant progress in its anti-smuggling operations in the State.
During the month of August, 2021, the Command recorded a total of 95 Seizures. These include 4,138 bags of foreign parboiled rice of 50kg each, 830 cartons of frozen poultry products, 15 units of both foreign used vehicles and means of conveyance, 6 sacks of cannabis sativa and other illicit drugs, 6 bales and 15 sacks of used /secondhand clothings, 6 sacks and 90 pieces of used handbags, 16 sack and 34 pairs of used shoes, 592 kegs of petroleum products of 25 litres each made for smuggling outside the country, and many other items.
The Customs Area Controller (CAC), of the Command, Comptroller Peter Kolo, disclosed this during press conference, held at Idiroko border, yesterday.
According to him, “The report of our activities during the month is released to media for the purpose of public enlightenment.”
He explained :
“In the Area of revenue generation, the Ogun State borders are still closed to Customs Operations and has remained closed. The only available source of revenue to the Command are auction of seized petroleum products and scrap metals. Through this, the Command is able to generate a total of One Million, nine hundred and ninety-seven thousand five hundred Naira (N 1,997,500) in the month of August, 2021 and the cumulative Duty Paid Value of all our seizures during the month amounted to N 72,589,473.”
He went on; “The events in the last few days in Ogun State in which some group of student alleged importation of Arms and Ammunition through the Command is sad, embarrassing and very unfortunate, portraying the indigenes and citizens of Ogun State in Bad light.
While recognizing and indeed commending the patriotic students among them, whose voices prevailed to call off their planned protest, it is imperative to draw the attention of His Excellency, the Executive Governor of Ogun State Prince Dapo Abiodun, members of the National and State assemblies from the State, Traditional Rulers Authorities of Tertiary Institutions and other respected opinion leaders in Ogun State to this emerging security threat.
“By their acts and actions, we suspect smugglers who can no longer have their ways are instigating activities that are capable of breaching public peace and good order being enjoyed in the State.
Let me state that the campaign of calumny and blackmail against Customs by this group or any other group and their sponsors will not dampen our morales or discourage our resolve to succeed in this battle against enemies of the State.
“We are not distracted but remain resolute and focused on our anti-smuggling Operations in the State.
I commend the courage and gallantry of all officers in Ogun I Command in the face of sustained intimidation and unwarranted attacks by desperate dare devil smugglers in the State.
” I urge you to continue to maintain this high level of professionalism in carrying out your statutory duties.
“I appreciate all the Sister Security Agencies in the State for their synergy and collaboration with the Customs Service, the Traditional Rulers, Critical Stakeholders supporting the cause of our operations and the Media for objective reporting of our activities.”.