Customs, rice farmers sign MoU to stop rice smuggling

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NIGERIA Customs Service and
the Rice Farmers Association of
Nigeria (RIFAN) have signed a
Memorandum of Understanding
(MoU) to stop rice smuggling
through land border into the
country.
President Rice Farmers
Association of Nigeria (RIFAN),
Alhaji Aminu Goronyo,
disclosed this on Wednesday in
Abuja.
He said even though the
importation of rice through the
land borders was banned since
April 2016 with an extension to
the restriction of rice into the
Nigerian market from the Export
Processing Zones (EPZ), yet
smugglers still engaged in the
unwholesome act.
Goronyo warned Nigerians
against the consumption of
foreign rice, saying that most
of the imported rice is stale and
only meant for animal and sh
feeds.
He said result of test by
NAFDAC through some samples
of some of the rice seizures had
ascertained that smuggled rice
through the land borders was
unt for human consumption.
“99 per cent of rice smuggled
through the land borders are not
t for human consumption,” he
said.
Goronyo said that the
Comptroller-General of Nigeria
Customs Service, Col. Hameed
Ibrahim Ali (rtd), reiterated
recently at a joint meeting with
RIFAN and Customs that rice
importation remain banned
through the land borders.
The RIFAN President said to
ensure eective monitoring of the
land borders, the Comptroller-
General has approved a 12-man
implementation committee
to be headed by Assistant
Comptroller-General, Alino
Dangaladima.
He said Customs promised
to continue to ensure the
restriction of rice import
through the land borders to
boost local production.
He said that the
Comptroller-General agreed
that there was need for total
ban on rice importation and
eective monitoring of the
land borders to stop the
activities of the smugglers.
The RIFAN president
added that the customs boss
reinstated that any attempt to
import rice through the land
borders would be resisted,
saying the position remain
unchanged.
He said the customs told
them that it had deployed
more ocers and men to
borders to enforce the order.
According to him, customs
had also re-organised its anti-
smuggling patrols to provide
additional capability, to
enforce the ban of rice import
through the land borders.
Goronyo said that the
committee would be
replicated at the state level
to be headed by all state
chairmen of RIFAN and its
members would serve in the
committee to be headed by the
state comptroller of customs.
He said the enforcement has
become imperative because
the ongoing Rice Revolution
undertaken by many state
governments, and Strategic
Interventions by the Federal
Government Agencies was a
step toward self suciency



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