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Nigerian customs intercept N8.7m smuggled petrol en route Benin Republic



Officers of the Nigeria Customs Service, Western Marine Command, have intercepted 12,500 litres of Premium Motor Spirit known is petrol worth N8,750,000 along the Isalu Creek Badagry Waterway en route to Benin Republic.

According to a statement and pictures shared on by the NCS on Sunday, the Customs Area Controller, Comptroller Paul Bamisaiye, revealed this at the command’s headquarters on Friday.

The statement partly read, “At about 2330hrs on Wednesday, 8 May 2024, while on joint patrol based on credible intelligence, we received the movement of two boats laden with what was suspected to be petroleum products concealed in sacks. Upon receipt of the information, the team moved into Isalu Creeks Badagry Waterway.

“The Customs Area Controller stated that careful examination of the seizure at the Command Headquarters revealed ‘177 sacks and 61 kegs of 25 Litres Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) containing 12,500 Liters with a total Duty Paid Value standing at N8,750,000.”

Bamisaiye was reported to have warned smugglers to desist from their acts or risk arrest, stating that the action of the smugglers contravenes Sections 245 and 254 of the Nigeria Customs Service Act 2023.

He was quoted as saying, “There’s a strong warning to the economic importance of this kind of seizure at a time of fuel scarcity cannot be over-emphasised.

“People are suffering due to artificial scarcity, but they are busy smuggling these products outside the country to make money. It’s either they stop this act, or we continue to arrest them. We have zero tolerance for this act.”

Similarly, the Adamawa/Taraba command of the Nigerian Customs Service (NCS) says it recently seized 12,435 litres of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) worth N10.8 million.

The Customs Area Comptroller in charge of the command, Bashir Garba-Bature made the disclosure while briefing newsmen in Yola.

According to him, the seized items included 491×25lt and 8× 20lt jerrycans of the commodity, saying that the petroleum was intercepted in Mubi en route to Cameroon.

“The command officers while on Anti-smuggling operations along the border frontiers within two weeks had recorded incidents of interception of PMS on its way to the Neighbouring Cameroon Republic,” he said.

He assured that the command would sustain the fight against the menace of smuggling, saying: “We have strategically deployed our operatives along the flashpoints.”

Bature solicited the cooperation, understanding and collaboration of relevant stakeholders such as the media, sister security agencies and patriotic citizens to curb smuggling.

“We attributed the successes recorded to the unwavering support and encouragement being extended to us by the current leadership of the service under our Comptroller-General, Mr Bashir Adeniyi,” he said.

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