The Oyo/Osun Command of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) has intercepted contraband with a Duty Paid Value (DPV) of N50.63 million between April and June.
The Customs Area Comptroller in the command, Ogah Odibu, made the disclosure at a press briefing in Ibadan.
According to Odibu, the seized items included 13 used vehicles with total DPV of N21.14 million and 1,669 50kg bags of rice with DPV of N14.75 million.
The comptroller said the command also intercepted 44 kegs of vegetable oil with DPV of N754, 469 while the DPV for seized 38 bales of second-hand clothes amounted to N5.83 million.
He also said that the command intercepted 15 50kg bags of sugar with DPV of N490,000 and 13 means of conveyance vehicle with DPV of N7. 66 million.
Odibu said that the seized vehicles, which were used to convey the contraband, included trucks, buses and fairly used cars.
The comptroller said that yams and firewood were used as camouflage to conceal the seized goods.
“About eight suspects were arrested with some of these goods; most of the suspects have been released on bail but the cases are in court for further prosecution.
“Investigation is still ongoing in some of the cases,” he said.
Odibu, while speaking on the revenue drive of the command for 2018, said that the command generated N9. 436 billion between January and May.
He said that the figure represented 38 per cent of the revenue target given to the command.
“The revenue generated same period last year was N7. 22 billion, showing a clear increase with the revenue generated this year.
“All these achievements would not have been actualised without the gallant efforts of officers and men of the command and the existing synergy with other units like the Customs Intelligence Unit, Federal Operations Unit and the CGC’s strike force.
“We all worked to the best of our abilities,” he said.
The comptroller also advised members of the public to be wary of would be fraudsters who place employment adverts on social media.
“The legal recruitment into the Nigeria Customs Service will be announced on nationwide print and electronic media and it will be published extensively on the official website of the service and official Facebook page.
“Note also that customs recruitment application is free at all levels,” he said.
He also appealed to the media not to relent in efforts at sensitising the public on the effects of smuggling on the nation’s economy.
“We will continue to encourage members of the press to advise the public against the recalcitrant activities of economic saboteurs who will insist on engaging in the illicit business of smuggling or defrauding citizens.
“Legitimate business operators can always approach the command for clarification or visit the Nigeria Trade Hub for any enquiry,” he said.
He reiterated the commitment of the Nigeria Customs Service to intensifying efforts on border policing in order to foil the strategies of smugglers.