Apapa Customs intercepts N1.143 billion tramadol, codeine syrup, other prohibited items

bc nigeria customs service
bc nigeria customs service

By Steve Agbota, Lagos

Apapa Command of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) says that it intercepted tramadol, codeine syrup and other prohibited items worth over N1.143 billion in the first quarter of the year 2022.

Speaking during a press briefing at Apapa Port, the Customs Area Controller of the Command, Comptroller Yusuf Malanta Ibrahim, said anti-smuggling activities have been a matter of Central concern in the command, particularly with the activities of recalcitrant traders who are always looking for ways to undermine Custom’s system.

According to him, the enforcement unit has been strengthened through strict monitoring, enhanced collaboration and sharing of credible intelligence with relevant government agencies to suppress smuggling activities to their barest minimum.

‘Thus, the command recorded 46 seizures of various items with a duty paid value of N1.142 billion as against 28 seizures made in the corresponding months of the year 2021.

‘The seized items include unregistered medicaments such as tramadol and codeine syrup, unprocessed wood, used clothing, footwear, foreign parboiled rice and other sundry items that fall under the prohibition list. These importations are in clear contravention of sections 46 and 47 of Customs and Excise Management Act (CEMA) CAP C45 LFN 2004,’ he added.

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n the period under review, he said the command generated N264.536 billion in revenue into Federal Government’s coffers within the period under review, which shows a significant increase of N104 billion as against N159 billion collected in the corresponding months of the year 2021, representing an increase of 65.7 per cent in revenue.

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‘This feast was made possible because of our officers’ creativity and leveraging on the service IT platform to ensure all revenue leakages have been mitigated, as well as sustaining the level of compliance by the importers/stakeholders in the clearance value chain,’ he said.

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However, he reiterated that Apapa Command is always ready to assist in facilitating legitimate trade and ensuring that all forms of smuggling activities through a false declaration on import/export done in defiance to extant trade guidelines would be detected through its layers of control mechanism.

In line with the Federal Government’s efforts to diversify the economy through non-export, he said the command recorded the exportation of agricultural goods, mineral resources, steel, etc.

He said for the first quarter of the year 2022, statistics from the export report indicate that goods worth N34.072 billion, with a Free On Board (FOB) value of $87.992 million were exported as against N32.2 billion, which is equivalent to a FOB value of $82.1 million between the months of January to March 2021.

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