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‘Seme Customs Made 982 Seizures’

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By Moses Falobi

The Seme Border Command of the Nigeria Customs Service has made 982 seizures as part of its anti-smuggling efforts between January and October this year.

The disclosure was made by the Area Comptroller, Alhaji Kura Maitama, while receiving members of the Presidential Committee on Customs Reforms in his office recently.

According to him, the seizures valued at N358,379,218.00 and comprise assorted goods listed under government’s import prohibition list.

Alhaji Maitama attributed the command’s achievements to the supply of logistics by the Comptroller General of Customs, Alhaji Dikko Inde Abdulahi, who provided the needed tools that assisted in the command’s anti-smuggling operations.

According to him, “we have resoled to sustain the tempo and maintain a zero tolerance for smuggling until it is suppressed to the barest minimum. We have taken this further by establishing roving and crack teams to patrol the mangroves and bushes.”

He said the command, in pursuit of its N6 billion target for 2010, had collected a cumulative sum of N4,704,712,750.35 between January and October this year.

He said it is a great improvement over the same period last year which was slightly above N2.8 billion, which has a difference of N1.8 billion which is about 63.31 per cent increase.

The comptroller also disclosed that in pursuance of the Joint Committee on Commerce (JCC), the Nigerian Embassy in Cotonou, Republic of Benin, had issued consular identity card to the Nigerian Customs officers resident there to facilitate their movement within the country.

He said the JCC is a bilateral economic agreement between Nigeria and the Republic of Benin.

On trade facilitation, the Comptroller reiterated the command’s resolve to maintain its less than 48 hours goods clearance time and ensured that the ASYCUDA automated system for customs data, which is fully operational in Seme, is deployed to maximum use.

In his reaction, Dr. Ochi Achiniru, the chairman of the committee, commended the leadership of the command and urged its officers to keep up the job.

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