The Nigerian Customs Service, Kano/Jigawa command on Friday impounded 250 bags of foreign rice concealed in a fuel tanker along Daura-Kano road, worth over N5.5m of duty paid value.
Displaying the seized tanker and the rice, the controller of the command, Comptroller Nasir Ahmed, said the new method of concealing goods by smugglers was new and challenging.
“What we saw today is a little bit new, something that is challenging to our thinking. If somebody can load rice in a compartment that is supposed to be containing diesel, petrol or kerosene, then we should assume that they can conceal anything in the tank.
“It can contain Tramadol, it can contain arms and ammunition or any other prohibited goods, and they loaded it in such a way that it will be very difficult to detect. But through intelligence and diligence of our men, they were able to perceive it,” he said.
Ahmed added that keeping rice or any other consumable in such condition has some serious health implications in addition to the security threats the new method of smuggling was posing to the nation.
He called on the general public to support and compliment the effort of the federal government by desisting from patronizing such smuggled goods and giving useful information to the relevant security agencies.
Reacting to the incident, the President Kano Chamber of Commerce, Dalhatu Abubakar, said the dealers of locally milled rice were not helping matters by hiking the prices of local rice, as a result of which the foreign rice was still patronized.
He called on the federal government and the central bank of Nigeria to intervene by giving capital in form of soft loans to the dealers so that the price of commodity could be controlled.