The Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) says it has donated rice worth over N4billion to the Internal Displaced Persons (IDPs) in Borno, Yobe, Adamawa and Edo.
The National Public Relation Officer of NCS, Mr Joseph Attah, made the disclosure in Lagos on Monday.
“So far a total of 424,391 (50kg) bags of rice worth N4.047billion and other seized perishables have been distributed to IDPs in Borno, Yobe, Adamawa and Edo states,” said Attah.
According to him, the Comptroller-General of Customs (CGC), Retired, Col. Hameed Ali, has sought approval to donate seized items to other IDP camps while there will be continuous seizures by the anti smuggling operatives of the command.
“The CGC has, therefore, sought and obtained presidential nod to extend distributions of these relief items to other IDP camps and registered orphanages across the country.
“Already, the list of IDPs and orphanages across the country are being compiled with a view to kick-starting the nationwide distribution as soon as possible.
“Hopefully, this will provide relief to fellow Nigerians who are going through tough times in the IDP camps and Orphanages,” Attah said.
Apart from 238,094 (50kg) bags of rice seized across the country between January and November, Attah said, in all, the service recorded 4,010 seizures, including, arms, ammunitions, dangerous drugs, second hand clothing and vehicles worth over N40 within the period.
Attah also said the service generated N1.037 in 2017 and had also surpassed it’s target of over 800 billon for 2018.
Attah, however, said the service was faced with some daunting challenges.
He said attacks on customs operatives smugglers, assisted by Nigerians, and lack of proper implementation of the Economic Community of West Africa States (ECOWAS) protocol on transit to neighbouring countries constituted serious obstacles.
“We have the challenge of porous borders, non cooperative attitude of some border dwellers and use of motorcycles and animals to smuggle goods through different terrains.
“Despite the challenges, the NCS has recorded 4,010 seizures with duty value of over N40 billion.
“You will recall that last month, NCS announced seizures of 59 containers loaded with Tramadol and other controlled drugs across the commands of the service,” said Attah.