By Godfrey Bivbere & Providence Adeyinka
The Federal Operations Unit (FOU), Zone A of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), yesterday, said it has impounded 42 drums of explosives in the form of calcium carbide and other contraband worth N3.1billion smuggled into Nigeria from Benin Republic.
The Unit also impounded other contraband items worth N3.1billion, and raised Demand Notice (DN) worth N242million.
Acting Customs Area Controller (CAC) of the Unit, Compt. Usman Yahaya, who disclosed this in Lagos, said that investigation is ongoing to know where the explosives are headed.
He said the Unit also intercepted 1,488 kegs (equivalent of 33,000 litres) of Petroleum Motor Spirit (PMS) set to be smuggled out of the country to neighbouring Benin Republic, noting that other seizures range from bags of rice, Indian hemp, textiles material, cartons of tramadol, second hand clothing among others.
“We intercepted the 42 drums of calcium carbide through intelligence gathering. The contrabands were in a truck and concealed with cassava tubers and flakes. They thought with the concealment, they can evade our officers.”
“The explosives were intercepted at Sango Ota axis and then, we know the items are coming from Benin Republic through the unapproved routes. Calcium carbide is on the list of contrabands because it is dangerous to the nation if it get to the hands of bad elements.”