Customs Impound Two Helicopters Valued At N9.7b

BEVERLY HILLS, January 27, (THEWILL) – The Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) on Friday said it had intercepted two helicopters and 23 consignments of accessories, valued at N9.7 billion, illegally imported into the country.

Dan Ugo, a Deputy Comptroller-General of Customs, told journalists in Lagos, as the goods were being handed over to Nigerian Air Force, that the two helicopters and accessories were impounded at the Murtala Muhammad International Airport because the importer could not provide End User Certificate from the office of the National Security Adviser (NSA).

He revealed that the importer had contravened Section 36 (2) of Customs and Excise Management Act (CEMA), Law of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 2004.

“The consignment, which was impounded on Nov. 7, 2016, had a Duty Paid Value of N9, 757,135,240.86 (N9.8 billion),” he said.

“The consignment was detained at SAHCOL cargo shed. Upon examination, the consignment was found to contain two civil models of Bell Helicopters 412 EP, with serial numbers 36608 and 36606.

“The consignment also contains 23 packages of accessories, weighing 11,475kg. This equipment was seized because the importer contravened the Customs Act.

“The Comptroller General of Customs, Retired Col. Hameed Ali, in appreciation of the roles of Air Force has directed that the equipment should be handed over to the Nigerian Air Force.

“When we make seizures, we go through legal process by approaching the court of competent jurisdiction to file for condemnation and forfeiture to the Federal Government of Nigeria, which had been done.

“This falls within the purview of the Nigerian Air Force which will put it to use maximally to protect us as a nation.”

Hyacinth Eze, an Air Commodore, received the consignment on behalf of the Chief of Air Staff, Sadiq Abubakar, revealing that the actual physical examination of the consignment would be done at Nigerian Air Force Base.