By Michael Eboh
The Nigerian Customs Service, NCS, Tuesday, stated that the joint border patrol by the security agencies have apprehended 100 illegal migrants and 117 suspected smugglers at the country’s borders and has seized various items ranging from rice, fertilizer, vehicles to assorted drug.
In a statement in Abuja, Public Relations Officer of the NCS, Deputy Comptroller Joseph Attah, said as at September 10, 2019, the team had seized 8,360-50 kilogramme bags of parboiled foreign rice; 122 bags of fertilizer; 77 vehicles; 781 drums filled with PMS as well as 16,371 empty 200 litres drums to be used for smuggling PMS.
He added that the NCS also confiscated 1,491 packs of assorted drugs; three outboard 40 horsepower engines; 13 Cotonu boats; 185 drums of groundnut oil; six trucks; 114 motorcycles; among other items with 117 suspects.
He said, “Three weeks into the intensive joint border patrol by the security agencies, the Office of the National Security Adviser, ONSA, has continued to receive reports of large numbers of seizures and arrests from the 4 sectors of North West, North Central, South West, and South South geopolitical zones.
“As part of the efforts to sustain the rigorous patrol along the national borderlines, the Comptroller General of Customs, Col. Hameed Ibrahim Ali (Rtd), Comptroller General of Immigration, Mohammed Babandade and the Coordinator of the exercise, Brig Gen Emmanuel Aliyu Ndagi have commenced an on the spot assessment of the implementation and compliance of the ongoing border security drills.
“The exercise, which is being led by the Nigerian Customs Service (NCS) and the Nigerian Immigration Service (NIS), in collaboration with the Armed Forces of Nigeria (AFN) as well as the Nigeria Police Force (NPF) and other security and intelligence agencies is intended to better secure our borders, boost national economy and strengthen border security.
“Accordingly, we continue to appeal to the patriotic spirit of all Nigerians, especially members of the business community to see the exercise as an opportunity to further create a conducive environment for local businesses to thrive in the overall interest of national security and development.”