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Customs claims insecurity, cross border smuggling down by 90%

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AT the backdrop of sustained criticism of the Nigeria’s border closure, the Customs Area Controller of the Nigeria Customs Service, NCS, Kwara Command, Comptroller Ahmed Hussaini Bello, has claimed that insecurity nationwide and cross border smuggling have reduced by more than 90percent in the past two months.

The development, according to him, has also significantly created a progressive impact on agricultural policies of the federal government, with the local rice value chain making gradual but steady productivity climb.

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Bello noted that whatever initial hardships associated with the border closure would soon be a thing of the past, adding that no nation can develop without some initial pains.

The Kwara Customs boss in a statement signed by the Command Public Relations Officer, Chado Zakari, also disclosed that the Command raked in a total of N1.27 billion revenue into the federation account between August and October 2019.

He listed seizures recorded within the period under review to include foreign rice, petroleum products and mosquito nets with Duty Paid Value, DPV, of N25.4 million.

Giving a breakdown of the revenue collected, Bello said N980, 000 was generated in August followed by N697.8 million in September and N572 million in October.

The statement said the impressive performance was due to strategic policies and plans put in place by Bello, in addition to the efforts to bring all excise factories within the Command under effective control by ensuring they pay appropriate excise duty.

The statement reads in part: ‘‘In our efforts to key into the Federal Governments policy on agricultural development in the area of boosting local rice production, the Command has made our territories unfavorable for rice smugglers and other prohibited items. ‘‘The gains are coming in, in a short while whatever initial challenges that might have arisen will be over. No nation develops with some initial pains.’’

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