Nigerian Navy seized 3,574 bags of smuggled rice in Calabar
3,574 bags of imported rice making their way from Cameroon, were seized by the Navy in Calabar.
The Nigerian Navy impounded 3,574 bags of foreign rice worth N53.6 million which were making their way illicitly into the country from Cameroon; one humid day in February. The goods were confiscated in Calabar, South of Nigeria.
The naval personnel who seized the rice are attached to the Nigerian Navy Ship Victory (NNSV) in Calabar.
Commander of NNSV, Commodore Julius Nwagu told newsmen that the arrest was made along the Calabar waterway in the early hours of February 27, 2018.
Nwagwu said the Navy acted on a tip-off which detailed the activities of the smugglers.
‘Two days to offload’
“It took us two and a half days to offload the content. After counting, we got 3, 574 bags valued at N53.6million”, Nwagwu said, adding that three suspects have been arrested over the incident.
The impounded bags of rice were thereafter handed to the Nigerian Customs Service (NCS) for a public incineration.
Nigeria possesses a disturbing sweet tooth for imported rice and other imported products.
The Muhammadu Buhari administration has outlined a policy that revolves around zero importation of rice and other foreign products.
The administration has been encouraging Nigerians to patronize local produce as the nation seeks to diversify an economy tied to the value of oil in the international market.
“We must produce what we consume and consume what we produce”, has been the mantra of the Buhari administration.
“This is a country that spent USD5million every day importing rice; we’re not doing that anymore”, presidency spokesperson Garba Shehu boasted in a recent interview.