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Rivers Custom Generates Over N293bn in Six Months, Seizes 7 Containers Worth Over N3bn

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Emmanuel Nlewedum, Port Harcourt

The Area 2 Command of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), Onne in Rivers State says it has generated a revenue of over N293 billion from January to June, 2024. The Command also disclosed that it has also siezed 7 containers worth over Three (3) billion naira loaded with codeine and fabrics illegally smuggled into the country.
The new Customs Area Controller, Area 2 Command, Onne, Comptroller Mohammed Babandede, disclosed this while briefing Journalists on the activities of the command during his maiden press conference in Onne, Eleme local government area of Rivers State on Friday.
Comptroller Babandede said the revenue generated was more than half of the initial target given to the Command for the entire year of 2024 before it was reviewed two weeks ago.
According to him, “The Command was initially given a target of N494 Billion before it was reviewed two weeks ago to N618 Billion naira as revenue target for year 2024. As at the end of May 2024, the Command had generated a total revenue of Two hundred and Forty-Nine Billion, Seven hundred and Fifty-Two Million, Two hundred and Sixty-Eight thousand, Two hundred and Ninety-Eight naira, Twenty-Eight kobo (N249,752,268,298.28) which translates to 50.4% of the initial target and 40.3% of the current annual target.
“When compared to the same period last year, the Command had an increase in revenue generation of One hundred and Fifty-Three billion, Two hundred and Thirteen Million, Seven hundred Thousand, Four hundred and Fifty naira, fifteen Kobo (N153,213,700,450. 15).
“It is worthy to note that despite the NLC strike, Democracy day and Sallah holiday, as at this morning (June 21), the Command has generated Forty-Three billion, Four hundred and Thirty Million, Two hundred and Sixty Seven Thousand, Two hundred and Ten naira N43,430,267,210.00 in the month of June 2024.
“We look forward to continuous rise in revenue generation in the coming months and we are optimistic that we would surpass the annual target by the end of the year.
Continuing, he said “On anti-smuggling activities, we have six displays of (6) seized Containers for violations or contraventions of various customs laws and breach of procedures as provided under the revised import prohibition guidelines of the Common External Tariff 2022-2026, as well as Sections 233, 234, 235, 245, 246 of Nigeria Customs Service Act 2023.”
“The seized items on display are as follows: Four 4×20 feet containers laden with bales of clothing, lace and fabrics i.e (96 jumbo size in total) with Duty Paid Value of N911,520,011.00.
“Also seized were two 2×40 feet containers laden with 2,625 cartons of cough syrup codeine, 80 cartons of Sildenatil Citrate tablets and 40 cartons of deluxe chilly cutter with Duty Paid Value of N2,250,654,000.00 (Based on concealment, false declaration, contravention of revised import prohibition guideline and section 55 Sub-section (1) paragraphs (C) and (I) of NCS Act 2023).
“The content of these importations contravenes the provision of the law which prohibits and restricts certain goods for the protection of the public health. Put together, the total Duty Paid Value of the 7 seized containers stands at
N3,188,454,452.”
Speaking further, he said, Also today we have on display a seized Container of used electronics which has turned to e-waste. As you are aware of the environmental effect such waste pose to human lives, for the purpose of disposal we shall be working with the National Environmental Standards and Regulation Enforcement Agency (NESREA) in the spirit of inter- agency cooperation, synergy and in line with section 119 & 245 of the NCS Act 2023 to have it disposed.”
The Onne Custom Comptroller explained that the seizures were made from intelligence gathered and information sharing with sister agency alongside 100% physical examination.
He thanked the NDLEA for their collaboration and inter-agency cooperation, noting that “seizures of this magnitude could not have been possible without their involvement.
He said investigation is still ongoing to arrest the culprits and bring them to book as soon as possible, adding that the seized containers would be filed for condemnation at the federal High Court, Port Harcourt and shall subsequently be forfeited to the Federal Government.

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