Nigeria Customs Service, Federal Operations Unit, Zone A, in Lagos, has arrested unscrupulous importers of Tramadol and other restricted drugs into the country, also a bus containing 39 sacks and 1,220 parcels of Cannabis Sativa popularly known as Indian Hemp.
The Nigeria Customs Service, NCS, has stepped up its offensive against the unauthorized importation, distribution, sales and use of this category of medicines, as the Service has resorted to also picking up the classified items in bits and pieces, and other various ingenuous means of concealments.
The items, concealed inside fresh tomatoes, pepper, and vegetables, were impounded along Olorunda axis of Ogun state on Friday last week, the agency said.
Mohammed Uba, the Controller of the unit, said the vehicle, a Ford with engine registration number: XL23452L, was impounded alongside the driver after a tip-off from members of the public.
“In the spirit of inter-agency relationship, the seized substance will be handed over to NDLEA for further investigation,” he added.
Other items seized by the agency two weeks after the last seizure are one MAN Diesel Truck with registration number XB 286 BEN along Afromedia Estate by Egbeda Junction beside Alaba International market carrying 2,748 cartons of DSP Codeine Cough Syrup 100mg (100 per carton) and 95 cartons of Chaka Pain Xtra, a pain-killer, based on a tip-off.
“This is the second time in a row the unit is intercepting this substance since the Federal Government banned the importation of cough syrup that contains codeine. The substance is valued 1,175,200,000,” Mr Uba said.
“The driver of the truck on sighting our officers abandoned the truck and fled. Also, 49 cartons of tramadol capsules 100mg were evacuated from a warehouse in Ajao Estate based on information. The drugs will be handed over to NAFDAC for further investigation.”
Mr Uba, who has just been transferred to head the Customs Command at Seme, said his officers had evacuated 21 sacks of pangolin scales weighing 1,031kg and four pieces of elephant tusk weighing 29.35kg from a shop in a market in Victoria Island based on information by the Warehouse Operations team led by Mutalib Sule, a customs officer.
“The occupant of the shop fled and still at large but investigation is already ongoing towards getting the culprit arrested and prosecuted,” said Mr Uba.
“Among the detained vehicles include seven Toyota Land Cruiser Jeeps (2015-2018), 4 Toyota Hiace Bus (2017), two Toyota Coaster Bus (2017), and four Toyota Camry (2014). These 17 Exotic Vehicles have a duty paid value of N384,291,251.94.
“While four of the vehicles were intercepted along Ijebu Ode Expressway, 13 were evacuated from House Plot 1 Akintailor Close, Allen Avenue, Ikeja, based on credible information.
“Eight suspects were arrested in connection with these 25 seizures.”