Customs seizes contraband worth N61.5 billion

Customs seizes contraband worth N61.5 billion

Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), recorded 5,235 seizures with Duty Paid Value (DPV) of about N61.5 billion in 2018.

The Comptroller-General of Customs, Hameed Ibrahim Ali, who disclosed this in a statement at the weekend, said although smuggling remained a challenge, the Service’s three layers security strategy has continued to make it unattractive to prospective smugglers.

He said the NCS generated the sum of N1.2 trillion in 2018, about N164.8 billion higher than 2017 collection estimated at N1 trillion.

According to him, the seizures in the year included; arms, ammunitions, more than 59 containers of Tramadol and other controlled drugs, and 320,709 foreign bags of rice a host of others.

He advised citizens, especially border dwellers and port users, to support NCS by reporting any smuggling activity to the nearest Customs formation.

“Together we can protect our economy and security by joining hands to fight smuggling and ensure that appropriate customs duty is paid on every dutiable import,” he was quoted.

Ali said the feat recorded last year was as a result of dogged pursuit of what is right rather than being a populist by compromising national interest on the altar of individual or group’s interests.

He said the increasing yearly revenue generation from the service in the last three years is the result of reform programmes, which include upgrade of the electronic systems from Nigeria Integrated Customs Information System (NICIS I) to NICIS II, which has blocked leakages.

Others are strategic deployment of manpower; strict enforcement of extant guidelines by the Tariff and Trade department; robust stakeholder engagement resulting to increased compliance, and increased disposition of officers and men to put national interest above selves.

“We appreciate compliant stakeholders that have supported the Service in 2018, and call on all Nigerians and especially international trade actors to help make 2019 better for the nation,” he added.

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