Area command restrategises against trans-border crimes

• Officer arrested for drug trafficking
Following the arrest of an officer in connection with drug trafficking, the Seme Area Command of the Nigeria Customs Service has reassured of its commitment to strengthen anti-smuggling operations against trans-border crimes.

The Customs Area Controller, Mohammed Aliyu, made this commitment while handing over a dismissed officer caught in the illegal act of drug trafficking, to the Commander NDLEA.He disclosed that a lot of strategies have been adopted by the command to ensure that the busiest land border will be a “no go” area for trans-border miscreants/traffickers of any kind including small and light weapons.

The officer (names withheld), was arrested with a 391 kilogrammes (kg) of tested Cannabis sativa (Marijuana), worth about N8 million.Aliyu added that all necessary conditions were explored in line with the public service rule, and the Customs and Excise Preventive Service Regulation before the officer was relieved of his appointment.

The Comptroller further noted that the punitive measures for gross misconduct of unruly behaviour meted on the dismissed officer is to serve as a deterrent to other bad eggs in the service that may choose to be recalcitrant to warnings.

Commenting further, the Command’s helmsman frowned at the alarming and disturbing rate at which illicit substances are being apprehended by officers and men of the command in an attempt to smuggle them through the waterways or land borders.He reiterated that the leadership of the Service will not shy away in purging it from all unscrupulous elements who delight in dragging its image in the mud.hence portraying the Service as subservient to other organisations because of criminal and irresponsible acts that are inimical to the ideals of the service.

Aliyu assured that Seme Command would continue to protect the nation’s territorial integrity through the scanning of all imports and aggressive anti smuggling operations of all illegal routes.

He explained that the measure became imperative because there is a lot of security threat and opportunities arising from international trade growth and global migration. Meanwhile, the Customs Area Controller while delivering a welcome address at the Customs Community Consultative Forum (CCCF) recently, sought for the cooperation of all stakeholders in the host communities (Baales, youth and opinion leaders), bankers and licensed agents in the successful enforcement of the Federal Government policies trade facilitation.

The Area Controller, in a Joint Border Security meeting, also dwelled extensively on the need for inter-agency collaboration for effective border management, intelligence sharing and strict compliance with the ECOWAS Protocol along the Lagos-Abidjan Corridor; which will facilitate legitimate trade and enhance ease of doing business.

The command generated N317.8 million as revenue for the month of May 2017. The anti-smuggling unit of the command also made a total of 28 seizures with a duty paid value of N30 million for the period under review.

He further assured that the Seme Command remained committed to performing its statutory responsibilities without fear or favour; as the security, economic and socio-political development of the nation is dependent on effective and efficient management of its borders.

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