The strike force team of Nigeria Custom Service has confiscated 25 vehicles conveying prohibited goods with duty paid value of N20.4m in Kano.
The items were intercepted following a tip off from public spirited individuals.
The national coordinator of the strike force, Abdullahi Kirawa, disclosed this to journalists in Kano on Friday, saying the intercepted vehicles include two buses, 17 cars, two pick ups, three space buses and one truck.
He revealed that the smuggled items seized include 2,920 bags of foreign parboiled rice, 214 jerrycans of foreign vegetable oil of 25 litres each and 2 bales of second-hand clothing.
Others according to him are 16 cartons of foreign spaghetti and 2 new bales of veils.
“This is part of the seizures made as a credible information given to us by the good samaritans. These bags of rice were concealed to deceive our men that it is cement. Because of the intelligence report at our disposal, it was opened the result is what you are seeing, suspected smuggled rice.
“This type of information made available to us by good samaritans is very essential to the success of our operations,” Mr Kirawa said.
He said the drivers arrested have been granted administrative bail, while their vehicles remain under custom custody until they reveal the identity of the smugglers.
Responding on what customs will do with the seized items, Mr Kirawa said “It is exclusive right of the board of Nigeria Custom Service to decide how the items should be disposed of.
“Is not our decision, mine is to arrest, the board decides on what to do. However, the government in its wisdom has set up a committee to distribute seized items to IDPs,” he said.
The strike force team of Nigeria Custom Service was formed by the Comptroller General of Customs Hameed Ali to complement area commands and federal operation units in checkmating smuggling in Nigeria.