The Federal Executive Council, FEC on Wednesday approved a memo presented by the Minister of Finance, Kemi Adeosun for the purchase of 81 units of two bedroom flats for the Nigeria Customs Service.
Mrs. Adeosun, stated this while briefing State House correspondents after the FEC meeting which held inside the council chamber of the presidential villa.
Mr. Adeosun said the property located in Idu, Gwari district, Life Camp is “ for use as barracks for customs officers within the Abuja area”.
The Minister also said the “ total amount is N1.2 billion. We are purchasing them from Brains and Hammers City”.
Mrs. Adeosun said she also presented a second memo which was approved for the purchase of 50 operational vehicles that are going to be deployed for anti-smuggling or anti-rice smuggling task force being put together under the leadership of the Customs service.
“ As you know, efforts to become major rice producers has resulted in the revival of local rice growing. What we have found is 90 per cent reduction in the official import of rice but smuggling has increased and of course, our borders are very, very porous.
“Now, we believe that to protect our farmers, to protect the investment that people have gone back to the farm for, government must really act to stem the tide of illegal rice importation and rice smuggling.
“So, there is a multi-task force agency that has been working since last July which includes customs, NAFDAC, the Consumer Protection Council, the Ministry of Finance, the Trade Mark Practices Bureau, gathering information on how this rice is coming in. What are the key entry points? And mapping out how we are going to have effective strategy to stop it,” she said.
The Minister said the government is taking the measure in order to stop Customs from going to the markets to seize imported rice.
“Customs should actually stop rice coming in at border points and they indicated that they need additional vehicles, additional resources as well as more information driven measures that will be taken.
“But what was approved today was the purchase of 50 vehicles as part of these efforts. The contractor is Elizade and the value is N1.12 billion,” she said.
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