Hardship: Customs begins sale of 25kg of rice for N10,000

By Nudoiba Ojen

The Nigerian Customs Service on Friday began sale of seized food items to the masses as part of efforts to redress the hardship facing many Nigerians in view of the high prices of goods and commodities.

People came out in their numbers in Lagos and queued up and were picking 25kg bag of rice at N10,000 each.

The NCS Comptroller General, Mr Adewale Adeniyi, who earlier said the exercise would begin on Friday, has said that the service’ decision to sell some seized food is to crash the price of food items and shore up the value of the Naira.

He warned against the resale of purchased rice, adding anybody caught reselling will be arrested and possibly prosecuted.

Adeniyi said that said the process for the sale of the food items has been perfected such that a form with all the details of the applicant including the National Identification Number, NIN, will be submitted and a bar code will be generated for the collection of the commodity.

The comptroller-general said that 10 registration points would be opened for members of the public with a view to easing the purchase process.

The Customs boss explained that the disposal of the seized items would be for a period of time adding that very poor Nigerians were the target for this gesture.

He said, “In ensuring food security for Nigerians. We are here to shed light on the commitment of the NCS in protecting our society by ensuring the availability of essential food items.

“In recent months, the government has been addressing the challenges faced within our economy, particularly the lagged effects of insecurity and the current exchange rate issues.

“As part of our ongoing commitment to safeguarding the food security of Nigerians, the NCS has secured approval from the government to dispose of these seized food items to needy Nigerians at discounted prices.

“The criteria for Nigerians to benefit from this initiative include having a verifiable National Identification Number (NIN).

“The target groups include artisans, teachers, nurses, religious bodies, and other Nigerians within our operational areas. The intention is to reach out directly to members through these organized structures to ensure the maximum impact of this exercise.


“To ensure the security and integrity of this initiative, NCS has put in place comprehensive measures. These measures encompass robust security protocols throughout the process. Our officers will be closely monitoring the entire supply chain to prevent any misuse or diversion of the food items.

“Moreover, we have established strict guidelines and eligibility criteria to ensure that the items are distributed only to those in genuine need. Additionally, we will be working closely with relevant agencies to ensure compliance with the terms of this program.

“It is imperative that beneficiaries of this exercise understand that the items are not to be resold. We take a strong stance against any form of profiteering or exploitation of this initiative. We urge Nigerians to report any incidents of misuse or unauthorized resale of the seized food items.

“NCS is fully committed to transparency and accountability in this process, and we will not hesitate to take decisive action against any individuals or entities found to be in violation of the
terms of this program.”

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