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The operation unit of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), Katsina/Kaduna Command has disclosed that it has intercepted contraband with a Duty Paid Value (DPV) of N61 million.

The Customs Area Comptroller (CAC) in charge of Katsina and Kaduna, Olusemire Kayode, made the disclosure while displaying the seized items before journalists in Katsina Friday evening.

The contraband seized by the unit, according to the comptroller, includes 1,892 bags of smuggled rice, 162 bags of sugar, 320 cartons of drugs, 211 bales of second-hand clothes and mosquito coil, pointing out that all the seized items have DPV of N61 million.

“We intercepted a trailer loaded with drugs and a tanker truck loaded with mosquito coil. We also arrested seven drivers but we granted some of them administrative bail. As of now, we have about 32 cars of different shapes,” he added.

The CAC declared that the achievement was the result of operational dynamics it put in place in recent times, thereby making the axis a nightmare to smugglers who have always devised new strategies to beat the operatives of the command.

Kayode reiterated that the current intelligence-driven operation of the command was not only in line with the operational ethics of the service but in line with the international best practice.

He stressed that the command shall continue the harvest of seizures from non-compliant stakeholders and smugglers who have refused to heed the call for patriotism in their trade transactions.

He also reiterated the command’s zero tolerance stance for revenue leakage and reduced smuggling activities, by bringing the economic saboteurs to book and to face the arm of the law.

“We will continue to ensure that foreign rice and other prohibited commodities are not smuggled into the country,’’ he said.

However, it was observed that smuggling of rice and other contraband has become a major business of Katsina youths as the majority of them engaged in illegal smuggling as a means of livelihood.

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