In recognition of the responsibility bestowed on the Federal Operations Unit to suppress smuggling, block revenue leakages, facilitate legitimate trade, collect revenue and contribute to national security, the Acting Controller, Federal Operations Unit Zone A, Huassein Ejibunu has highlighted remarkable feat achieved by the operatives of the unit in the last one month.
In a press briefing with journalists, Ejibunu revealed that during July 2023, his officers successfully intercepted smuggled items, which included 15 bulletproof jackets, 15 jack knives, and 20 pistol pouches. This operation took place at the Ijebu-Ode Checkpoint in Ogun State, where a Toyota Sienna Bus was apprehended.
The driver of the vehicle was promptly arrested along with the seized contraband.
The total duty paid value (DPV) of the confiscated goods was an impressive Four Hundred and Sixty-Two Million, Seven Hundred and Eight Thousand, Eight Hundred and Seventy-Five Naira (N462,708,875).
Also, the unit managed to recover Sixty-Six Million, Four Hundred and Ninety-Three Thousand, Three Hundred and Forty-Six Naira, Forty-One Kobo (N66,493,346.41) in revenue.
The amount was deposited into the federation account through the issuance of demand notices (DN) on Customs duties that had been found to be underpaid. These accomplishments underscore the unit’s commitment to upholding national interests and ensuring compliance with customs regulations.
According to him “It is pertinent to know that the importation of all forms of bulletproof materials such as vests, ballistic materials and vehicles, as well as parts and accessories for all military armaments and hardware such as guns, arms and ammunition of all kinds; lethal and non-lethal requires an end-user certificate.
“An end-user certificate is applied to, and issued by the office of the national security adviser which loses its validity after one year from the issuance date. Hence, anyone importing a controlled item must do so within the validity period of the end-user certificate.
“Seizures recorded within the period under review are a reflection of officers’ commitment to duty, and no compromise posture in the discharge of our statutory responsibilities; aimed at protecting the national economy and preventing the importation of prohibited, and harmful goods.
“50 seizures were made within the period under review for non-compliance with the extant Customs laws. Notable among the seizures made are:
5,642 X 50kg bags of foreign parboiled rice (equivalent to 9 trailer loads)
18,925 litres (757 X 25 litres jerry cans of premium motor spirit)
20 pieces of pistol pouches
15 pieces of bulletproof jackets
15 pieces of jack knives
49 cartons of children school shoes
181(87 kg) parcels of Indian Hemp
357 kegs X 5 litres of vegetable oil
1 unit of Honda Motorcycle
2 used (Tokumbo) vehicles
“The total duty paid value (DPV) of the seized goods stood at Four Hundred and Sixty-Two Million, Seven Hundred and Eight Thousand, Eight Hundred and Seventy-Five Naira (N462,708,875). While the sum of Sixty-Six Million, Four Hundred and Ninety-Three Thousand, Three Hundred and Fourty-Six Naira, Fourty-One Kobo (N66,493,346.41) was recovered as revenue into the federation account through the issuance of demand notices (DN) on Customs duties that were discovered to be underpaid.
“13 suspects were arrested in connection with some of the seizures, and are at different stages of investigations and prosecution.
“I will also hand over three (3) suspects and cannabis sativa with a net weight of 7,728 kilogrammes to officials of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency, Lagos State Command; for further investigation and prosecution.”