11 cartons of explosives intercepted at Lagos Airport

NATIONAL MIRROR Newspaper- Olusegun Koiki

Officers of the Nigeria Customs Service attached to the Murtala Mohammed International Airport, Lagos and other security agencies yesterday intercepted explosives smuggled into the country through the airport.

NCS stated that the explosives, which weighed 95 kilogrammes, were packaged in 11 cartons labeled cartridge powder devices and chargers.

Luck however ran against the suspects when personnel at the Nigeria Aviation Company Limited (NAHCO) Plc warehouse were suspicious of the packaged content and quickly alerted security agencies, adding that the importer attempted to smuggle them out of the cargo terminal without declaring the items.

Parading the suspect yesterday at the airport, the Customs Area Controller in charge of MMIA, Mr. Charles Edike, stated that the explosives were flown in from South Africa since February 24, 2012.

He said that the importer even refused to pay the relevant duty on the items imported into the country to the coffers of the government.

Edike pointed out that the importer, who claimed to be a miner in Kaduna State brought in the explosives into Nigeria concealed in pallets made of other goods without disclosing to the relevant authorities the content, which he said ran foul of the rules of the government.

Edike explained further that the importer actually colluded with some clearing agents to take the explosives out of the cargo terminal without securing the relevant police permit and making payments to government on the duty for such goods.

He explained that vigilant security agents at the terminal noticed that the goods were undeclared explosives that were concealed along other goods and notified the Customs, which in turn informed other relevant agencies, including the Nigeria Police to carry out tests on the items, which were found to be prohibited explosives.

The name of the consignee according to Edike is Miero Marble Granite and Stones Limited in Kaduna State.

He also mentioned one Mr. Michael Awara Ernest as the representative to collect the explosives at the cargo terminal.

Also, he gave the name of the manufacturer ( consigner ) of the explosives as Nobleteq Arms and Ammunition Gateway Industrial Park in Centurion, South Africa.

He explained that in view of the security challenges in the country, where members of the dreaded Boko Haram group have been unleashing mayhem on ordinary Nigerians, it is prohibited for anybody or organisation to import any explosives into the country without the relevant approvals and permits.


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