The Nigerian Customs Service, Zone C, Federal Operations Unit, in January impounded various contraband items valued at N869.5 million.
The impounded items include 1,046 bags of foreign parboiled rice of 50kg each, 290 cartons of imported Eva Soap, 1,024 cartons of unregistered pharmaceutical products, 62 jumbo bales of second-hand clothing, and one Toyota Corolla 2018 model.
This was disclosed in Owerri by the Customs Area Controller (CAC) of the Unit, Yusus Lawal. He said “The 1,046 bags of foreign parboiled rice were trailed and evacuated from an unnamed warehouse along Elelenwo Road Port Harcourt based on intelligence, following lay down operational procedures, rules of engagement and ensued professionalism backed by section 147 and 151 of Customs and Excise Management Act Cap C45 LFN 2004.
“It’s our responsibility to ensure full implementation of the Government Policy banning the importation of rice through land borders and following headquarters directive on same, we re-strategised our operational modalities and beam our searchlight at the Creek, Water side, and at various locations in South-south, South East zones and hence the reason for the massive rice seizure within the month under review.”
He further stated that the interception of the 1,024 cartons of unregistered Colcaps medicaments imported from India without NAFDAC certification is troubling.
“Our concern now is to unravel those behind the importation, their accomplices and their antics of scaling through unapproved routes. The negative effects of unlicensed drugs if gotten to the wrong hands cannot be over emphasised.
“The drugs were intercepted along Ofosu-Benin Expressway based on shared intelligence. Equally, the 290 cartons of soap were intercepted along Aba-Owerri Road based on intelligence. You may recall that soaps and detergents are still on the Import Prohibition list, which falls under schedule 3 of Common External Tariff (CET).”