April 19, 2024

Ogun Customs Busts Live Ammunition Hidden In Sacks Of Cassava Flecks

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Ogun Customs Bust Live Ammunition Hidden In Sacks Of Cassava Flecks

By Ossy Onyenwezi

The Idiroko command of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) recently nabbed smugglers on the verge of smuggling 940 rounds of live ammunition into the country from Benin Republic.

In a press statement released by the command’s Public Relations Officer, Hameed Oloyede, the 940 rounds of live ammunition were buried inside bags of cassava flakes also known as Garri.

According to the statement, the Customs Area Controller, Compt. Ahmadu Shuaibu said the ammunition were intercepted on Thursday, March 14, 2024, when officers were on anti-smuggling watch along the border line. According to the Customs boss, the Command had been on the trail of the contraband for more than 2 weeks, from the Republic of Benin, before it was eventually smuggled into the country and intercepted by its operatives.

“The Ogun 1 Area Command of the Service made a seizure of life threatening ammunition, harmful substances, and other prohibited items. On Thursday, 14th March 2024, while on anti-smuggling operation along the border line, the Command operatives intercepted smuggled 940 rounds of live ammunition cleverly buried in sacks of cassava flakes, commonly known as garri in local language.

 

“The Command had been on its trail for more than two weeks, from the Republic of Benin, before it was eventually smuggled into the country. The trail of the cartel, the received intel revealed the level of surveillance mounted and security beef-up by the unscrupulous elements to safeguard the items and evade arrest. The superior security network of the Command eventually aided the seizure but lost the suspects, as the items were abandoned by the suspected smugglers who absconded in a bid to evade arrest,” Compt Shuaibu stated.

Compt. Shuaibu also revealed that poultry products, cannabis, donkey skin, and bales of used clothes worth N557 million were also seized by the command.

“the Command also recorded the seizures of 123 sacks and 3,172 parcels of cannabis sativa, commonly known as Indian Hemp; 380 pieces of donkey skin; 304 bales of used clothes; and 910 cartons of frozen poultry products, among others.

“These items were intercepted at the creeks, border lines, and other strategic locations across Ogun State through our intelligence network and 24-hour patrol/anti-smuggling activities by our operatives. The Duty Paid Value (DPV) of the total seizure amounted to N557 million.”

“We value the lives of our people, and we try our best to safeguard it. I would like to state emphatically that our operatives bear arms to protect their lives where and when necessary, any threat to their lives will not be treated with levity. Let me sound a note of warning to recalcitrant smugglers that their days are numbered. They will never go unpunished with their nefarious activities. We shall keep uncovering their antics, and very soon, they will be arrested and be made to face the full wrath of the law.”

The Customs CAC, however, appealed to Nigerians to join the command in the fight against smuggling of harmful and illicit substances such as arms and ammunition into the country.

“I appeal to well-meaning and patriotic Nigerians, to join forces with the Command in its fight against smuggling of harmful substance, light weapon, arms and ammunition. These items pose great threats to our national security and have the potential to destroy lives and properties within the shortest time possible.”

Meanwhile, the Command’s spokesman, Hameed Oloyede, said the command generated a whooping N24.283million as revenue from January till March 14th, 2024.

“On the revenue drive of the Command, the CAC reported that from January till date, the Command generated the total sum of N24,283,788 as revenue. He emphasized that the sources of the revenue collection remain baggage assessment and auction sales of petroleum products,” Oloyede stated.

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