Noah Ebije, Kaduna
The Nigeria Customs Services (NCS), Strike Force Team, has seized 5,119 50-kilogramme bags of parbioled rice in Kano and Kaduna zones within the past one month.
Other items impounded include second-hand clothes, vegetable oil, dates, second-hand shoes and six vehicles, in which the bags of rice were concealed.
While displaying the seized items to newsmen at the Kaduna NCS Zone ‘B’ office, the national coordinator of the Comptroller-General of Customs Strike Force, Deputy Comptroller Abdullahi Kirawa, said 3,797 bags rice were seized in Kano zone, while 1,322 bags of the rice, with duty paid value of N17 million, were seized in Kaduna zone.
He also disclosed that some persons connected with the goods have also been apprehended and were presently on administrative bail, with the assurance that they would be prosecuted accordingly.
Kirawa said the efforts of the strike force were yielding positive results as the rate of smuggling of such prohibited goods has now reduced to the barest minimum. He urged residents to take advantage of the Federal Government’s policy on rice.
“We are determined to continue to do our best until all forms of smuggling activities are completely wiped out in Nigeria. We urge those involved to desist from such activities, which is economic sabotage to the country but, instead, engage in meaningful ventures.
“We are synergising with other agencies towards ensuring that no stone is left unturned against all forms of smuggling of prohibited goods into the country,” he said.