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Nigeria Customs seizes items worth over N200m in Kebbi State

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Nigeria Customs Kebbi State N200m seizes items

Nigeria Customs seizes items worth over N200m in Kebbi State

Nigeria Customs Service, Kebbi State command has seized goods worth over N200m from smugglers.

Briefing journalists, at the command headquarters, the State Controller of Custom, Yusuf N. Garba said the seizures were made from February 2020 to date through the two borders in the state.

He added that five suspects had been arrested in connection with the smuggling of four trucks fully loaded with hides and skins, 22, 750 pieces of new textile materials, 1, 055 bags of 50kg and 20 carton of 25kg each of foreign parboiled rice and others, smuggled to the country through Kamba, Bagudo border areas of Kebbi State.

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Other items seized are 3,159 bags of 50kg foreign NPK fertilizers, 171 bales of second hands cloth and used footwear, 256 cartons of body cream, 90 sacks of power snuff and 43 vehicles and other sundry items.

Garba explained that the borders Kebbi shares with Benin Republic and Niger Republic have been under serious attacks by smugglers.

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Custom Officers Shot a 25years Old Father Of Five Dead.

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Officers kehinde Police

Custom Officers Shot a 25years Old Father Of Five Dead.

The family members, residents, and monarch of the town urged the Police to bring the officers fingered in the killing of the innocent man, Kehinde Ogunji. A young farmer who was killed by custom men on the trail of smugglers in the Yewa North Area of Ogun state to justice.

* The custom men said that Kehinde Ogunji was a smuggler who attacked them.

* Our son was not a smuggler, he is a farmer and justice must be done-Father, monarch

* Investigation is going on- Police.

Bringing the cultist into the book is the only way to console the family members of late Kehinde Ogunji, A 25years old father of five, who was killed by some customs officers in Agbon village in Yewa North Local Government Area, Ogun State on Saturday, May 9, 2020.

Ever since the incident, the 65years old father, Elder Emmanuel Ogunji, and the twin brother of the deceased Taiwo Ogunji, life has not been the same for the two of them.

According to the deceased father, his late Kehinde Ogunji was returning home with his twin brother, after a communal work at a farm belonging to one of the kinsmen. Taiwo later explained that when the minions of law opened fire on the smugglers, Taiwo and the deceased were on a motorcycle going home. The bullet hit Late Kehinde Ogunji who operated the motorcycle on the spot, while the real smugglers they were trailing escaped.

According to The father of the deceased, custom men numbering six, moved his son’s motorbike to a cliff near a river and covered his body with leaves.

He added: “I had just returned from an aro (communal farming) when Taiwo rushed in to tell me that some customs men opened fire on him and Kehinde while they were returning from a farm owned by one Sanusi Akindele, where they had participated in the communal farming exercise.

“I immediately asked him to lead me to the scene and I met the customs men there. The officers lied to me that some of their colleagues had used Kehinde’s motorbike to pursue some smugglers and that they were waiting for their return.

“I became curious when they could not clearly explain my son’s whereabouts. It was at that point that I decided to search the area only to find my son’s body covered with leaves and his motorbike parked near a river.”

Shocked by the discovery, Elder Ogunji said he raised the alarm and accused the customs men of deliberately killing his son and making attempts to cover up their complicity in his killing.

“When I raised the alarm and confronted the customs men, they could not say anything. I decided to report the matter at the Eggua Police Division from where I was directed to Oja Odan Division which has the jurisdiction to the incident the case.

“By the time we returned to the scene, the customs officers had called for reinforcement and forcibly took my son’s body away.

“The two customs men that pulled the trigger have confessed in their statement at Oja Odan Police Station that they actually opened fire on my son, Kehinde. The two officers were asked to report back to the station today (Monday) but we did not see them when we got to the station.

“My son is not a smuggler. He was a farmer and a father of five children and a husband of two wives. I suspect that the two customs men are trying to avoid prosecution, but I want to sound this loud and clear that nothing but justice can wipe my tears and calm me down on this matter.

“I am calling on both the police and the Ogun State Government to wade into this matter by bringing the errant customs men to justice.”

The deceased twin brother Taiwo Ogunji, who witnesses the death of his twin brother described the Customs men has been callous and heartless.

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He said that the officers don’t have any reason to shoot at them because they actually know that we are not smugglers.

Ogunji Taiwo said: “We left home around 6 am on that fateful day on empty stomachs but we took some garri with us. After working for some time on the farm, we took the garri in the hope that we would eat a real meal when we returned home.

“We finished clearing the farm at about 1 pm and we left on Kehinde’s motorcycle. I was seated behind him while he operated the motorbike.

“It was just a few meters to our village when we started hearing gunshots and my twin brother (Kehinde) was hit by bullets fired by customs men.

“The customs men did not bother to look at Kehinde who was in a pool of his blood. I had to race home to inform our father about the incident.

“By the time I returned to the scene with my father, the customs men, in a bid to cover up their indiscretions, had pushed Kehinde’s motorbike to the bank of a river and covered his body with leaves.

“Sensing that we could make trouble with them, they called for reinforcement and their colleagues arrived to forcibly take Kehinde’s body to a morgue. “All we want is justice because Kehinde and I are the breadwinners of our family. He is survived by two wives and five children.

“We have since informed our monarch, the Iselu of Iseluland, Oba Ebenezer Akintunde Akinyemi, about the incident, and he is disturbed by the dastardly act of the customs men.”

Akindele one of the kinsmen said that that the twin brothers had barely left his farm when news reached him that some customs men had killed one of them.

He also said:  “Kehinde is not a smuggler. The customs men are just trying to use that to cover up their wicked act, having killed him shortly after he left my farm where he and his twin brother, Taiwo, had worked for me free of charge in line with the custom of communal farming called aro.”

Customs men said that late Kehinde was a member of the smuggling gang.

But the Ogun 1 Customs Command, in a statement released by its spokesman, Abdullahi Maiwada, described the deceased Kehinde as a member of a smuggling gang who attacked its officers in their bid to intercept smuggled bags of foreign rice into the country.

Maiwada noted that the incident occurred at about 1 pm while officers of the command were on routine anti-smuggling patrol in Iselu and Egua areas of Yewa North Local Government Area.

The statement reads: “At about 1 pm on Saturday, April 25, 2020, officers and men of Ogun I Command of Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) went on routine anti-smuggling patrol eventually came across a convoy of motorcycles popularly known as okada ferrying smuggled foreign parboiled rice along the bush paths of Iselu and Igua communities, Yewa North Local Government Area of Ogun State.

“The aforementioned smuggling gang, having been caught red-handed, resorted to unleashing a vicious attack on officers performing their duties with assorted dangerous weapons.

“The officers successfully repelled the attack launched by the smugglers, and at the end, one of the smugglers died and his corpse has since been deposited in the mortuary.”

It added: ”Furthermore, the arrival of reinforcement teams enabled the evacuation of 44 bags of rice (50kg each) and two motorcycles abandoned by the smugglers to Government Warehouse in Abeokuta for safekeeping and further investigation.

”It is instructive to note that Saturday, April 25, 2020, was a date set aside for total lockdown in Ogun State due to the surge of COVID-19 pandemic. However, the daredevil smugglers who have no regard for the law of the land or the disease ravaging the global community resorted to crossing the border through illegal routes to perpetuate their nefarious activities, in total disregard of the health and economic well-being of the country.

”Finally, the Command wishes to reiterate and warn the public against attack on officers performing their lawful duty as such will leave the officers with no other alternative than to defend themselves.”

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Killing the innocent, leaving the real culprit?

Checks made by the reporter, however, revealed that the customs men might have missed their target and fatally silenced an innocent person in the course of hunting rice smugglers in the axis. Highly placed sources revealed that one  Sunday who resides somewhere in Eggua was the leader of the rice smuggling ring who escaped the guard mounted by the customs men while Kehinde, who was returning from his farm, was killed.

The said Sunday, sources said, had been on the radar of the customs command lately but had always beaten customs men each time they tried to intercept him.

One of the sources, who spoke in confidence, said: “They only killed the wrong person. The late Kehinde was never a smuggler.

“The culprit is known to the customs command and they have always missed him each time they try to apprehend him.

“The customs command is just being economical with the truth by claiming to have intercepted about 40 bags from Sunday.

“The truth is that the gang dropped off the bags of rice to block the road and stop customs men from chasing them further while they escaped with a lot of bags of rice.

”Sunday, who lives around the Eggua community, has not been arrested while innocent persons who are going about their legitimate daily endeavors are being killed unjustly.”

In his own reaction, the Iselu of Iseluland, Oba Ebenezer Akinyemi, described the killing of Kehinde as reckless and an act of murder by customs men.

He wondered why an unarmed farmer who was not found with any contraband was gruesomely killed while the real culprits escaped the grip of the law enforcement agents. son.

“For me, the police must do their job by bringing the unfeeling customs men to justice in the interest of deference to the sanctity of rule of law which is the basis of their existence and operations.

“I have spoken with the police and they have promised that justice will be done on the matter.”

Contacted, the Police Public Relations Officer of the state command, Mr. Abimbola Oyeyemi, said the people responsible for Kehinde’s death would face justice at the completion of the investigation.

Oyeyemi added that the case had been transferred to the State Criminal Investigation Department (SCID) at the state police command, Eleweran, Abeokuta, on the orders of the Commissioner of Police, CP Kennedy Enrimson.

“We are investigating the matter with a view to ensuring that justice is served.

“The case was initially handled by the Oja Odan Division, but CP Kenneth Ebrimson has ordered that the case be transferred to the State Criminal Investigation Department (SCID), Eleweran, Abeokuta, for further investigation.

“The bereaved family can rest assured that whoever is responsible for the killing will not go scot-free.

“The customs is a sister agency and the request for officers involved is not a difficult thing to do.”

The killing of Kehinde is coming barely three weeks after a 15-year-old schoolgirl, Sekinat Agbelade, was allegedly shot dead by men of customs men in Agosasa, Ipokia Local Area of the state.

The girl, a Senior Secondary School 3 student of Agosasa Community High School, was preparing for her West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE) before her untimely death.

The customs officers were said to be chasing some suspected rice smugglers when they fired the bullets that killed the girl as she was returning home from an errand.

 

 

 

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Oyo/Osun Customs Clears The Air on Poisonous Rice Allegations

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Oyo Osun Customs debunk allegation of poisonous rice

Oyo/Osun Customs Clears The Air on Poisonous Rice Allegations

In light of the Poisonous Rice allegation against the OYO/Osun Customs, Oyo Command Customs PRO Refutes Claims

The allegation against Oyo/Osun Command is that the command gave poisonous rice as COVID-19 palliative.

The Public Relations Officer, PRO Oyo/Osun Command of Nigeria Customs Service, Mr. Abdullahi Lagos Abiola, has described the allegation against the Oyo/Command baseless, mischievous and falsehood.

Oyo Osun Customs debunk allegation of poisonous rice

Oyo Osun Customs debunk allegation of poisonous rice

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In his words:
“The attention of Oyo/Osun Command of the Nigeria Customs Service has been drawn to some mischievous and deliberate falsehood being circulated in the media for reasons best known to their author(s) concerning the Federal Government’s palliative given to Oyo State among other states.

“As a responsible agency of Government whose functions include ensuring that nothing that could compromise security, economy and general being of Nigerians are allowed into the Country, we cannot turn round and be associated with giving anything that will negatively affect our people”.

He pointed out, ” We therefore wish to state as follows:
That in line with the Federal Government’s effort to cushion the hardship in the nation, the CGC had directed distribution of relief items including bags of rice across the nation through the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management, as palliative to the vulnerable, in the wake of COVID-19 pandemic.

“As instructed, on the 20th of April 2020, the Oyo/Osun Area Command received high ranking members of the Oyo State Government in the persons of the Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development, Mr Jacob Ojekunle; the Permanent Secretary Ministry of Agriculture, Mrs Saidat Bolatumi Oloko; Executive Adviser to the Governor on Agribusiness, Mr Debo Akande; The representative of Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs and Disaster Management and Social Development in Oyo, Mrs MO Lasisi and other members.

“They visited the Command twice on the same day to inspect the bags of rice that were available for allocation.
The Customs Area Controller, Comptroller, HU Ngozi led them to the warehouses where they inspected the bags of rice, checked expiration dates and expressed satisfaction and readiness to evacuate their allocation.
Before leaving the Command on their second visit.

They pleaded to be given those from a section of one of the warehouses they considered “fresher” and this was granted.

Subsequently, on the 21st of April 2020, the Oyo State Government team came with their vehicles under the supervision of Mr. Jacob Ojekunle, Mrs. Saidat Oloko, Mrs. MO Lasisi, and other top officials, in the presence of the Customs Area Controller, other officers and members of the press to witness the loading and exiting of the 1800 bags of parboiled rice allocated to their State, as a palliative to the vulnerable”.

He stressed, “Incidentally, in the process of loading, few bags fell at different times and burst open in the presence of Mr. Ojekunle and Mrs. Lasisi and there was no time that any of the burst bags of rice had weevils in them. The warehouse had no signs of weevils, neither were their signs of weevils on the loaders or on the trucks under the scorching sun.

“The three States; Oyo, Osun, and Ekiti took delivery of the bags of rice allocated to them, returned their landing certificates to show delivery to its final destinations.

“They also showed appreciation to the CGC for his magnanimity. Contrary to allegations by Oyo State Government, Osun and Ekiti States have not complained about their allocations.”

He exclaimed, “The Command is therefore surprised, even embarrassed to hear three days later, that the rice allocated to them were infested with weevils and unfit for human consumption.

“The Command wishes to reiterate that weevils do not hide and in the process of loading the vehicles, traces of weevils would have been noticed on the floor, on the bags, on the loaders or on the trucks bearing in mind that the entire process was in the presence of the CAC, Oyo State Government’s high ranking team and men of the press with full video camera coverage.

The Command is also aware that for whatever reason, some pictures of bad rice have been circulating the social media. We disassociate ourselves from such false images and we suspect foul play on the part of the handlers of these allocated 1,800 bags of rice. The State Government may wish to dig deeper.

“It is surprising how bags of rice that exited the Command HQ in good condition suddenly became so bad after three days, as being circulated in the social media.”

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New Order: CBN Raises Exchange Rate For Cargo Imports (326 ->361)

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CBN Raises Charges | Exchange rate
The new exchange rate for goods imported through the Nigerian ports is now N361 per dollar as against the earlier N326 to 1 dollar.

New Order: CBN Raises Exchange Rate For Cargo Imports

The new exchange rate for goods imported through the Nigerian ports is now N361 per dollar as against the earlier N326 to 1 dollar.

In light of this, Yesterday, the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) effected an increase in duty payable on cargoes imported through the ports, in a development that has caused many anxieties at the ports as importers and freight forwarders complained about this surge.

Just in: Adamawa Receives COVID-19 Palliative From Federal Government

CBN Raises Charges

(Stock Photo: Customs Officer Standing Next to Cargoes with Cranes in Sight) Cred: Africa Press

In counter towards the complaints, the Vice President of Association of Nigeria Licensed Customs Agents (ANLCA), Dr. Kayode Farinto, said it is true that the Customs has effected the changes without due consultations with relevant stakeholders.

According to him, the implication of the increment is that the cost of cargo clearance would be increased in line with the duty increase, and this would affect the cost of products in the market.

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Farinto lamented that clearing agents who have completed their transactions based on the old rate of N326 per dollar are no longer able to take delivery of their consignment because it could not be imputed into the system.

“We woke up this morning to find out that the rate has been changed on the Customs system without any consultation or sensitisation. The government is behaving as if we are in a military era, not even in the face of this COVID-19 when every country is trying to lessen its hardship on its citizenry. This our government is confused.

There should have been a minimum of three months’ notice so that whatever transaction we are making anywhere in the world, we would adjust it. The increase in the rate of the international price of the dollar is not an excuse, most of the importers are sourcing their dollars from the black market. The government ought to have latched on to this small window, knowing that a barel of oil is just $10 now. If you kill the maritime industry, our economy is finished,” he said.

Updates Coming Soon from Nigeria Customs Service in a Press Statement

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The #COVID19Nigeria situation report for 21st July, 2020 has been published. Our daily reports provide a summary of the epidemiological situation & response activities in Nigeria

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The African Union and Africa CDC will virtually rollout the Partnership to Accelerate COVID-19 Testing (PACT) in Africa tomorrow 4 June, 2020 at 11.00 am Eastern Africa Time.

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"Also found worthy of honour was Bashir Abubakar, an Asst Comptroller-General of Customs, who rejected a bribe of $412,000 per container offered him by drug traffickers seeking to bring 40 containers of Tramadol into Nigeria. A fine example of incorruptibility, worthy of emulation"

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