The Nigeria Customs Service, NCS, Apapa Area Command, has generated N212.6 billion in the first quarter of 2023.
Its Area Controller, Comptroller Auwal Mohammed, said this at a news conference in Lagos on Tuesday.
According to Mr Mohammed, the command’s functions of revenue generation and collection, suppression of smuggling and facilitating legitimate trade have been consistently implemented within the first three months of 2023.
“My meeting with various stakeholders and partner government agencies is to ensure the tempo of compliance is sustained and improved upon, the command stood forthright in foiling attempts at smuggling prohibited items into and out of the country.
“On this note, the command recorded a total collection of N212,592,680,700.99 covering January-March,” he said.
The customs boss noted that for export trade, the command processed agricultural goods such as sesame seeds, ginger, hibiscus, mineral resources, steel ingot and others.
He added that it had a total tonnage of 110,448 metric tonnes in the first quarter of the year.
“Statistics from the export report shows that the exported goods are worth N70.2 billion which is equivalent to Free on Board (FOB) value of $159,845,232.84,” he said.
Mr Mohammed said that as regard anti-smuggling, the command resolved to enforce government fiscal policies and extant laws to ensure that all import and export consignments transiting through Apapa Port are duly examined.
He added that these had been strengthened through effective collaboration and timely sharing of credible intelligence with sister government agencies in the port.
He said that within the period under review, the command made seizures of 14 containers comprising of prohibited items such as vegetable oil, foot wears, used clothing, unprocessed wood, and tramadol tablets with a Duty Paid Value of N22.1 billion.
“It is pertinent to mention that on March 31 the command uncovered a large quantity of 225mg of tramadol tablets concealed in 2x40ft container numbers TRHU 4758549 and TRHU 6936803.
“143.8 million tablets of Tramadol 225mg were discovered in 720 cartons weighing 10.3 tonnes (10,386kg) that originated from India, and this single seizure is valued at N21.6 billion,” he said.
He added that the command was on the look-out for those behind such unlawful importation for arrest and very soon they would be tracked down to face the full wrath of the law.
He said that as a service, they owe Nigerians the duty to prevent this kind of importation from entering the market to safeguard the health of the citizenry.
He warned perpetrators of smuggling, duty evasion and other forms of criminality, saying that “it is frowned upon by the Customs and Excise Management Act, CEMA, and other extant laws, that Apapa Command will only facilitate legitimate trade”.
“Since my assumption of duty here, I have been meeting with various stakeholder groups comprising importers, exporters, licensed agents, freight forwarders, and others and these meetings are yielding good results and will be sustained in days ahead.
“In this command, we have a deliberate culture of inter-agency collaboration with other government organisations. Within this first three months, I have enjoyed robust sharing of credible intelligence and support from other agencies of government.
“I want to respectfully extend my profound appreciation to the CGC, Col. Hameed Ali (Rtd) and his management team for their untiring support, government agencies in the port for collaboration and synergy, officers and men of Apapa command for their determined resilience,” he said.