By Innocent OROK
Billions of Naira Worth’s of Seized goods by the Nigeria Customs Service personnel are roting away in the Service Warehouses across the Country, just as the Col Hameed Ali (rtd) led management of the Service is yet to find a solution to the wasting items nearly four years in office.
Worst hit are several bags of rice, vehicles, tyres, second hand clothing among others.
It could be recalled that recently, the Seme Border Command of the Customs destroyed over 1000 bags of rice which has been in the Command’s warehouse for more than two years and are no longer fit for consumption.
Our investigations reveals that some of the food stuff like rice seized by the Customs were allocated to IDP camps in the North East, but they have refused to carry them.
The refusal of the affected States to evacuate the rice was alluded to lack of funds for logistics by the States to the Military personnel for the task.
It was gathered that a whopping N5million was demanded per truck by the Army to carry the items from Lagos to the North East.
Infuriated by the l
huge sums, the affected States have abandoned the items rather opting to use the money to buy it cheaper or feed the campees .
We also gathered that millions Unit of Vehicles seized by the Customs suffers same faith as they are roting away on a daily basis.
This again, Hameed Ali cannot find a solution to it as the online auction introduced by the Customs last year to auction the Vehicles have since been jettison due to lack of ICT infrastructure to sustained the platform.
Worried by the epidemic such spoiled items may cause to officers and the general public, the Assistant Comptroller General and Zonal Coordinator of Zone A, of the NCS, Aminu Dahiru during his tour to the Western Marine Command in Ibafon , Lagos was informed by the Command’s Controller , Comptroller Sarkin Kebbi that over 80% of the rice in its warehouse which is filled up to the brim has expired and not fit for consumption.
A source from the Customs said the Management are confuse on what to do with the various seized items worth several billions of Naira.
The source lamented that despite the fact that Customs Officers put their lives on the line to make most of the seizures, the Customs management is allowing it to rot away.
It could be recalled that since the Col Hameed Ali led Management of the Service took over in 2015 his efforts to streamline auction process in the Service has not yielded any major success.
Even the decision to allocate rice and other edible items and wares to IDP Camps has also hit a brickwall leaving the total rot of seized items in Customs warehouses across the Country.