14bn Worth of Goods Seized by Customs FOU, 'Zone A'

14bn Worth of Goods Seized by Customs FOU, 'Zone A'

By Kathy Kyari 

2022 for Federal Operations Unit A Area is a time of protracted, uncompromising anti-smuggling raids for customs evasion and diligent trade facilitation.

This was revealed to journalists by Acting Assistant Controller of Federal Operations Unit, Area 'A', Hussein Kehinde Ejibunu on Thursday, January 5, 2023.

He said they "have pursued our core missions without fear or favor in the six Southwest states, namely: the states of Lagos, Ogun, Oyo, Osun, Ekiti and Ondo. Even in the face of resistance, attacks and tricks in the form of cover-ups, we are forced to assume our responsibilities." 

" I am pleased to announce that we have shaken up the world of contraband in our area of ​​responsibility. This unit also prevents loss of government revenue as our assigned position is the control layer that has detected tax evasion attempts. We recovered the detected deficits by issuing a Notice of Demand (ND)."
Ejibunu emphasized that by prioritizing the national interest over any specific or private interests, they did all of this at the expense of our lives. It is unfortunate that some of our cops had to pay a high price."They are heroes in our eyes in the struggle against smuggling, and we will never forget them." 

From January 1 to December 31, 2022, we made a total seizure of contraband with a customs clearance value of Thirteen billion nine hundred eight million five hundred seventy five thousand four hundred thirty-six naira, five kobo (N13 908 575,436.5)

Along with safeguarding the country's economy, some arrests have been made in order to safeguard the public's health by preventing the smuggling of toxic, outdated, and dangerous goods.
Foreign rice, vehicles, medical supplies, textiles, petroleum products, and other things on the list of goods prohibited from import and export were among the items seized.

He added that the seizure list is topped by rice in terms of volume. 93,102 X 50 kg, or around 156 rice trailers, have been seized. The recently constructed warehouse was swamped with rice that had also been seized. A total of 108 vehicles, including trucks, tankers, cars, and motorcycles, were impounded for being either contraband or used to carry it.

In addition to protecting the national economy, a number of arrests aimed at protecting people's health for dangerous, expired and harmful products have been prevented from being smuggled into the country.
The illegal drugs seized during the year under review were; 2,354 kg and 4,976 Cannabis sativa tablets, 233 boxes of X 225 milligrams and 82 packs of X 225 milligrams of Tramadol. It must be remembered that these powerful drugs promote crime and insecurity.

For petroleum products, this force seized 656,414 liters of high-grade motorbike gasoline (PMS); which means about 20 tank trucks full of fuel by economic saboteurs who seek to impoverish the majority of our citizens by taking subsidized gasoline for the benefit of the people to resell in other cities. Other countries.

Last year, they made an arrest of 176 smugglers, sentenced 7 subjects, 14 subjects were brought to trial and are in the investigation and prosecution stages, 7 subjects are in temporary detention; Two suspects have been handed over to the NDLEA and one to the Nigerian Police, respectively, while 151 people are on administrative bail. 

DC Hussein Ejibunu also pointed out on a sadder note that last year, four (4) of their officers—late Customs Inspectors TP Astor and A Onwueguzie, Assistant Customs Inspectors Musa, R, and Bristol, E—died while performing their official duties and confronting smugglers. While adding that those responsible for some of the murders were apprehended and brought to justice.

The Acting Deputy Controller added with pride that the Unit patrolled its area of duty in accordance with its enabling laws to guarantee that smuggled goods were found and recovered wherever they were hidden as they don't believe in taking time off, not even for the holidays, thus our 24-hour patrol is always refueled. 

Those who questioned this and tried to smuggle during the holidays were astonished by our Christmas and New Year's celebrations.

Hussein Ejibunu expressed his gratitude to the CGC and his management group for their unwavering support throughout the past year and the years prior.

He forecasted the agency will continue to maintain and speed their anti-smuggling efforts in 2023, maintaining our standard of no compromise while apprehending offenders and seizing their goods.

He urged smugglers and their allies to look for legal employment this year since this Unit will keep making their lives miserable through interdictions, arrests, seizures, and tenacious prosecution.

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