10,000 rice bags seized as Customs uncovers warehouse in jungle

Over 10,000 bags of imported 50kg parboiled rice have been seized by anti-smuggling officials of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) attached to the Federal Operations Unit (FOU), Zone ‘A’, Lagos.

The contraband items were seized in the wee hours of Tuesday in the remote jungle of Igbesa creek in Lusada area of Ogun State, where daring smugglers created an improvised warehouse used to store illegally imported items before taking them to the market.

According to FOU’s spokesman, Uche Ejesieme, the seizure remains the highest recorded in a singular operation in the history of the anti-smuggling unit.

He added that the Controller of the unit, Turaki Usman, and his team comprising the Deputy Comptroller in charge of Enforcement, Orobiyi Felix, other senior officers and men of the unit got wind of the illegal warehouse via high level intelligence.

“We immediately swung into action and that led to the huge seizure,” he said.

Ejesieme further explained that the volatile nature of the area made officials of the FOU to seek the assistance of neigbouring commands from Seme, Idiroko and other security agencies including the Nigerian Navy, Army and Civil Defense Corps to provide the needed support before storming the place to evacuate the contraband items.

He said the seizure, which value and DPV was yet to be determined as at press time, will reinforce the unit’s determination to reduce smuggling to the barest minimum irrespective of the operational tactics of the unrepentant smugglers.

Ejesieme quoted the controller as saying that “our men are everywhere within our jurisdiction. No hiding place for smugglers. They should either quit this illegitimate trade or face the full wrath of the law. We’re here to discharge our duties and promote legitimate trade,” he said.

Source : SunOnline

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