Oramalugo Hands over N1.7 Billion fake drugs to NAFDAC, Generates N18.1 Billion in Q1

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Oramalugo Hands over N1.7 Billion fake drugs to NAFDAC, Generates N18.1 Billion in Q1  

CG Adewale Adeniyi, MFR
Compt Oramalugo briefing the Press

Counterfeit pharmaceuticals products seized by the Oyo/ Osun command of the Customs worth more than N1.7 billion were handed over to the NAFDAC yesterday.

The Area Controller, Dr Ben Oramalugo disclosed that the command would not leave any stone unturned in waging the war against illicit drugs in his area of jurisdiction. He also noted that more than N18.1 billion was generated into the federation account by the command in the first quarter of this year, with N5.6 billion raked in for the month of March alone.

It is a great pleasure and honor to welcome you all to the third press conference of the year 2024 for the Oyo/O sun Area Command of the Nigeria Customs Service. As we gather today, I would like to reflect on the revenue, the anti-smuggling activities and the efforts of the Command to enforce necessary Federal Government policies amid the ongoing economic challenges facing our nation, all while maintaining a humane approach.

I would like to use this medium to express our gratitude to the Comptroller General of Customs (CGC) BA Adeniyi MFR dsm fnipr psc (+) and his Management Team, for initiating various strategies that have enhanced the performance of the Command and have contributed to achieving the core mandate of the Service within Oyo and Osun States. The score card of the Command so far for the year and the first quarter of 2024 is as fallows;

REVENUE GENERATION I am pleased to announce that the Oyo/Osun Area Command has continued to demonstrate commendable performance in revenue collection since the beginning of 2024. Despite the prevailing economic challenges, our officers have worked tirelessly to facilitate trade while ensuring compliance with Customs regulations. According to him, this act of resilience and dedication in ensuring the efficient collection of customs duties and taxes, underscores the Commands commitment to contribute to the economic stability of our great nation Nigeria for the month of March 2024 the Oyo/Osun Area Command collected the sum of N5,673,615,71 8.56 (Five Billion, Six Hundred and Seventy-Three Million, Six Hundred and Fifteen Thousand, Seven Hundred and Eighteen Naira, Fifty-Six Kobo) into the coffers of the Federal Government. When added to the sum of N12,496,043, 684. 11 (Twelve Billion, Four Hundred and Ninety-Six Million, and Forty-Three Thousand, Six Hundred and Eighty-Four Naira, Eleven Kobo) already collected for the period of January to February 2024, the cumulative sum of N18,169,659,402.67 (Eighteen Billion, One Hundred and Sixty-Nine Million, Six Hundred and Fifty-Nine Thousand, Four Hundred and Two Naira, Sixty-Seven Kobo) was collected for the first quarter of the year 2024.

ANTI-SMUGGLING ACTIVITIES: In tandem with our revenue collection efforts, the Oyo/Osun Area Command has intensified its anti smuggling activities to safeguard our borders and protect our economy from illicit trade practices. The act of smuggling poses a grave threat to our national security and economic stability, and we are committed to combating this menace with unwavering resolve.

I am pleased to announce that the Area Command has recorded significant successes in intercepting smuggled goods during the period under review. Through targeted intelligence-led operations, collaboration with other law enforcement agencies, enhanced border surveillance and the utilization of advanced technology we have seized various contraband items including narcotics (Cannabis Sativa Tramadol Tablets), Foreign Parboiled Rice, Petroleum Motor Spirit (PMS), Second Hand Clothing and Used Tyres.

These interceptions underscore our commitment to thwarted attempts to smuggle prohibited items into our communities thereby upholding the integrity of cur borders, safeguarding public health and safeguarding the interests of our nation. He said for the period of March 1st to April 16th 2024 the Command has intercepted and seized the following contraband goods Six Hundred and Fifteen Thousand, Seven Hundred and Eighteen Naira, Fifty-Six

Enforcement of Federal Government Policies: As we reflect on our achievements, it is important to acknowledge the economic challenges currently facing our country. Inflationary pressures, currency fluctuations, and other macroeconomic factors continue to pose significant hurdles to our economic growth and development. However, I am confident that with strategic planning and collaborative efforts, we can overcome these challenges and steer our economy towards sustainable recovery.

He stressed, despite the constraints imposed by the prevailing economic conditions, the Oyo/Osun Area Command of the Nigeria Customs Service remains resolute in its commitment to duty and service. We recognize the vital role that trade facilitation and revenue generation play in driving economic progress, and we are fully committed to fulfilling our mandate with integrity and professionalism.

Engagement with Stakeholders:To foster understanding and collaboration, the Oyo/ Osun Area Command actively engages with stakeholders, including trade associations, community leaders, and government agencies. Through dialogue and partnership, we seek to address concerns, solicit feedback, and find mutually beneficial solutions to the challenges we encounter.

This inclusive approach enhances transparency, trust, and effectiveness in our operations at the excise factories and the border areas. According to him, the success of our operations would not be possible without the support and collaboration of our stakeholders, including the efforts of all Traditional Rulers, Local Government Chairmen and Key Stakeholders in both Oyo and Osun States, who have sustained the enlighten their people about the negative effect of smuggling to our economy. He stated that it is also important to appreciate the collaborative effort of Sister Security Agencies such as the Nigerian Army, Nigerian Air Force, Nigeria Police force Department of State Services NDLEA, Oyo State once extended to us in our efforts to promote compliance, combat smuggling, and uphold the rule of law.

I would like to express our profound gratitude, to the Executive of the Command. We believe that with the collaborative effort of all stakeholders, we will continue to uphold the mandate of the Nigeria Customs Service and contribute to the economic growth and security of our great nation I would also like to extend my appreciation to the officers and Men of them. Together, we have made significant strides in revenue collection, anti-smuggling efforts, and the enforcement of Federal Government policies. As we navigate the the second quarter and first half of the year, I would like to enjoin all Officer and Men of the Oyo/Osun Area Command to deploy available intelligence/technology at their disposal and remain steadfast in their commitment to serving our nation with integrity and empathy.

In conclusion, the Oyo/Osun Area Command remains committed to its mandate of revenue collection, anti-smuggling activities, and enforcement of Federal Government policies. As we navigate the complexities of the current economic landscape, we will continue to prioritize professionalism, integrity, and a humane approach in all our operations. Today, the Nigeria Customs Service, Oyo/Osun Area Command, under the leadership of the Customs Area Controller, Dr Ben Oramalugo FCIA FNIM, successfully handed over seized counterfeit pharmaceuticals to the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC). The handover ceremony took place at the Operational Headquarters of the Oyo/Osun Area Command in Ibadan on April 17, 2024.The seized counterfeit pharmaceuticals include:7 sacks of Augmentin tablets (625mg)22 sacks of Ampiclox tablets24 sacks of Amoxycillin Capsules (500mg) These counterfeit drugs were intercepted by vigilant Officers of the Nigeria Customs Service, Oyo/Osun Area Command during a routine patrol operation. Upon examination, it was confirmed that the pharmaceuticals were counterfeit with a Duty Paid Value (DPV) of ₦1,739,000,000:00 (One Billion, Seven Hundred and Thirty-Nine Million Naira) and it posed a serious threat to public health and safety.In accordance with our commitment to collaboration and partnership in the fight against counterfeit products, the Customs Area Controller of the Oyo/Osun Area Command, Dr Ben Oramalugo FCIA FNIM, handed over the seized pharmaceuticals to the Zonal Director of NAFDAC for further investigation and appropriate action. Speaking at the handover ceremony, Dr Ben Oramalugo FCIA FNIM emphasized the Nigeria Customs Service’s unwavering commitment to safeguarding public health and combating illicit trade activities. He commended the dedication and professionalism of the Officers involved in the successful interception of the counterfeit pharmaceuticals.

The Customs Area Controller of the Oyo/Osun Area Command, Dr Ben Oramalugo FCIA FNIM also added that the Nigeria Customs Service, Oyo/Osun Area Command, remains steadfast in its commitment to upholding the integrity of our borders and protecting the health and safety of our citizens. We will continue to collaborate with relevant agencies and stakeholders to combat illicit trade activities and ensure compliance with regulatory standards. The Zonal Director South West Zone of NAFDAC Mrs Roseline Ajayi expressed appreciation for the collaboration with the Nigeria Customs Service and assured that the seized counterfeit drugs would undergo thorough examination and investigation. She reiterated NAFDAC’s commitment to protecting the Nigerian populace from the dangers posed by counterfeit and substandard products.

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