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Customs Seizes 10 Trucks of Fake Drugs, Textiles

Posted by From Cletus Akwaya in Abuja on 2005/03/06 | Views: 466 |

Customs Seizes 10 Trucks of Fake Drugs, Textiles


In yet another haul, the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), yesterday said it has seized nine-trailler loads of suspected fake and expired drugs and a truck of banned textile materials.

In yet another haul, the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), yesterday said it has seized nine-trailler loads of suspected fake and expired drugs and a truck of banned textile materials.

The drugs, packed in about 1,172 cartons, were impounded by Customs officers as part of the anti-smuggling campaign launched last year. Comptroller-General of Customs, Mr Jacob Buba, who conducted newsmen round the Custom's warehouse in Karu, Abuja, in company of the Director-General of the National Agency for Foods and Drugs Administration and Control (NAFDAC), Dr Dora Akunyili, said the seizure was the second to be made in Kogi State in less than six months, saying it was an indication that smugglers were changing their strategies of exploiting northern routes, as the sea ports had become too hot for them.

Buba said in order to beat the smugglers, he had spread a dragnet of surveillance across the nation's borders and into the territories of neighbouring countries, to gather intelligence reports on smugglers' activities, with a view to tracking them.

"We try as much as possible to send surveillance teams to borders and even a little into the territory of our neighbours to monitor these things and when we have confirmed they are coming into Nigeria, we monitor them and trail them to where we think it is safe for us to pounce on them. That was exactly what we did in this case.

"Obviously, when the ports became too hot for them, they have deviced other means. They use creeks, they use water ways. Now we know they discharge in the ports of neighbouring countries and move the goods up country and then try to move in through the land borders.

Akunyili said the smugglers had continued with their nefarious activities in spite of the campaign by her organization, because of the motivation for quick money.

"You want to know the incentives for smuggling? Most of these drugs don't contain anything. The incentive is money, greed, and insensitivity to the sufferings of the people. They have been doing that since the 1970s. They did not start yesterday or today, but they are losing the fight," she said in response to a question.

Some of the drugs with "made in India" on their packs, whose samples were taken by NAFDAC officials included: Debeco Vitamin B Complex Injection, and its tablet, Cold Off and Cold Tak (fast pain relief), Transglobe Lincomycin-500mg, Lincomycin Capsules -500mg, Oxytet, Cimetidine and Maloxine, which has March 2005 expiry date.

Some of the impounded vehicles had registration numbers, Kebbi XA 681 ARG; Lagos XD 198 JJJ; Sokoto XA 237 WRN; Gombe XE 386 GME; Sokoto XA 388 BN.


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