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Navy intercepts boat smuggling foreign rice into Nigeria

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Thursday, October 12th, 2023
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Nigerian Navy Ship NNS Beecroft , Apapa , Lagos , has intercepted a boat alleged to be smuggling in foreign rice from neighboring West African countries, into Nigeria.

Consequently, 44 bags of rice loaded in the boat were seized.
But there was no arrest as the occupants were said to have swam their way to escape on sighting the personnel.

Briefing journalists yesterday before the bags of rice were handed over to the Nigeria Customs Service, the Commander, NNS Beecroft, Commodore Kolawole Oguntuga, disclosed that the fishing boat was intercepted at about 5am on Wednesday, in Agbara area of the state .

He explained that “The surveillance system through the Falcon Eye alignment employed by the Nigeria Navy to ensure peace and tranquility within the maritime environment was used to detect activities of some economic saboteurs operating within the maritime environment.

“The tactics saboteurs are using now is to bring the rice consignment in bits. The Federal Government has banned the importation of rice to allow small and medium scale enterprises to grow. If we allow contraband like this to continue to enter the market, how will our farmers whom the government is assisting with fertilizers, thrive?

“The Nigeria Navy will continue to be dedicated to its duties in collaborating with other agencies towards ensuring that the maritime environment is safe and to also enforce laws and policies of the government. We will continue to go after these unpatriotic Nigerians to ensure that we don’t allow them to continue to inflict additional hardship on small and medium scale enterprises that are trying to survive in the country.”

“We are handing over these bags of rice to the Nigeria Customs Service under operation tripartite border patrol which involves different security agencies”.

He warned perpetrators of the act to desist, in their own interest, saying the Navy would sustained its “ 24/7 patrol to deter all illicit activities”

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