Customs alerts Nigerians of killer-rice

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Nigeria Customs Service

The Oyo/ Osun Area Command of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) yesterday alerted Nigerians that poisonous and deadly bags of rice are being sold in the open market.

The NCS said some unpatriotic elements conspired with some importers to smuggle the expired and deadly rice into the country via land borders.

Hundreds of bags of rice said to be deadly seized by men of the Command were paraded before newsmen yesterday.

The Command’s Area Controller, Comptroller Udo-Aka Emmanuel, who gave the warning at a press briefing in Ibadan yesterday, said the expired products are being smuggled into the country on a daily basis, adding that its consumption is  dangerous to human health.

According to him, he had investigated most of the goods smuggled into the country, especially frozen foods and rice, and discovered they were all expired.

He said investigations further  revealed that most of the bags of rice expired four years ago before smugglers repackaged and changed the expiry dates and send them to Nigeria.

“I visited borders to investigate most of those products but let me tell you, they are expired. Nigerians need to beware and patronise our local products. Research shows that smugglers repackage rice in their warehouse for more than four years and send it to Nigeria,” he said.

Udo-Aka who displayed some of the vehicles and goods intercepted in the Saki axis of Oyo State by the command, said those who refused to claim their seized goods within 30 days may forfeit it to Federal Government.

“I want to make it crystal clear to the entire public that the period of 30 days of grace that was given for the public to pay duties for vehicles that were smuggled has expired. The grace period ended on the 19th of May, 2017. They should come forth with the genuine documents and claim ownership within 30 days after which the goods are liable for seizure,” he warned.

Among the goods seized are assorted contraband goods with a total Duty Paid Value (DPV) worth N23million, 15 different vehicles, second hand clothing, foreign rice and other contraband goods.

He however said no suspect was arrested as the smugglers left the vehicles and took to their heels when they sighted the customs officers.

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