Billy Graham Abel, Yola

The Nigerian Custom Service, Adamawa and Taraba area command, has nabbed twenty (20) suspected smugglers transporting various banned products valued at about N98.3 million into Nigeria.

The Comptroller, Adamawa and Taraba area command of the Nigerian Customs, Karmaludeen Olumoh, made this known at a press briefing in Yola.

While reviewing the command’s 2019 performance Olumoh said, the command has made 74 seizures and arrested twenty (20) suspects within the year under review, in its clampdown on smuggling activities within Adamawa and Taraba states.

Olumoh said, “During the year under review, the command achieved major anti smuggling feats.

“A total of seventy four (74) seizures were made with the arrest of twenty (20) suspects.

“The seizures include foreign rice, pangolin scales smuggled into the country and thirty three thousand four hundred (33,400) litres of petroleum products that was to be smuggled out.

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“The Duty Paid Value (DPV) for the items stands at N98.3 million.”

Detailing the achievement of the area command in the years 2019, Olumoh said, “The command ended the year on a cheerful note haven met and surpassed its revenue target.

“The command though an enforcement area, generated a total revenue of N161.9 million realising an increase of N13.2 million naira over the given target of 148.6 million naira.

The Comptroller said, the successes of the command’s activities was due to its sensitisation effort with stakeholders on import and export procedures, effective border community relations, bringing into the tax net, items and commodities that had hitherto been avoiding payment of duty and due to the outstanding dedication and commitment of the officers and men of the command.

The Comptroller however pointed out that, these successes were not achieved without challenges as the command is bedeviled with a vast borderline challenge, insurgency and communal conflict challenges and non adherence to import and export guidelines by traders despite sensitisation by relevant agencies.

Olumoh reiterated the command’s commitment to its sensitisation effort with the view to improving the command’s revenue generation in 2020.