Border closure: Smuggling of 10m litres of petrol stopped, says Customs boss

Border closure: Smuggling of 10m litres of petrol stopped, says Customs boss

Monday, October 14, 2019 6:00 pm

Colonel Hameed Ibrahim Ali, Customs boss

Col. Hameed Ali (rtd), the Comptroller-General of Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), has said that the closure of the nation’s borders had saved 10.2 million litres of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS), from being smuggled out.

Ali announced the interception during a joint news conference with his counterpart from the Nigeria Immigration Service, Mr Mohammed Babandede, in Abuja on Monday.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the joint border security exercise, codenamed “Exercise Swift Response”, began operation on Aug. 20.

It was set up to tighten security around the nation’s borders, particularly the land and maritime borders, against trans-border security concerns.

The exercise is being coordinated by the Office of the National Security Adviser (ONSA), in the four zones of North-West, North-Central, South-West and South-South geopolitical zones.

“From the record available to me, the consumption of PMS in the country has reduced by 10.2 million litres since the border operation began.

“This means that this amount of fuel was being smuggled to the neighbouring countries before the exercise began.

“We are deploying every technology available to secure our borders, and in line with this, the president has graciously approved e-customs for the service,’’ he said.

According to him, e-customs means all customs tools will be driven by technology to manage the borders.

“Our men will remain at the borders for as long as it will take the neighbouring countries to adhere to ECOWAS protocols on transit.’’

Ali said that the development was not about the right of the citizenry but to secure and protect the lives of people by ensuring adequate security of Nigerian borders.

He reiterated that the current government would not compromise the security of the nation, “no matter what”.

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