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Customs intercepts N212 million codeine, viagra in Lagos

The Kirikiri Lighter Terminal (KLT) Command of Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), has seized N212 million codeine-based cough syrup, and sex-enhancing drugs imported from India.

Customs Area Controller of the Command, Hammi Swomen, who disclosed the development to newsmen in Lagos, said the drugs, falsely declared as hot pot for cooking, were packaged in two 40 foot containers.

He said the seizures were a product of intelligence gathering shared between the service and other sister agencies including the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), National Agency for Food Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) and other agencies.

“Here we have cough syrup containing codeine and other pharmaceuticals such as the drug called ‘Hydera’, which is equivalent to Viagra. As you are witnesses to the security challenges we are facing in this country and you are aware of the link between drug abuse and the ongoing security challenges.

“We have been on the trail of this importer for a while and we are happy that we have been able to effect this. So these are overtime containers that we have been profiling for a while. No declaration has been made so far. Now we have a total of 2,875 cartons of cough syrup containing codeine, 383 cartons of Viagra and 99 cartons of manual blenders. What was manifested was a different item entirely”, he said.

According to him, what was in the manifest were hot pots, which were like a food flask, adding that the items were not only false declarations, but also the importation of prohibited and restricted items.

He said the drugs were marked for export from India, the country of origin and that no declaration had been made before the seizures were effected; adding that the drugs were imported from India and clearly stated for export only, which means they are not consumed in their own country.

Swomen said no arrest has been made, but investigation is still ongoing to track down the perpetrators behind the illegal importation.

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