INVASION OF IBADAN RICE MARKET: Focus on Lawmaking, Don’t Teach us Our Jobs – Customs Slams Senate - Penangle | News Portal in Nigeria
Sun. Jun 16th, 2024
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Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) has told the Senate Committee on Ethics and Privileges to focus on its job, which is making laws, and leave the interpretation of laws to the court, advising them not to usurp the powers of other arms of government by interpreting the laws of the land.

It would be call that the Senate had earlier ordered the Nigeria Customs Service to return the bags of rice it seized from some shops in Bodija and Oja’ba Markets in Ibadan, the Oyo State capital.

Reacting to the order, NCS’s Deputy National Public Relations Officer, Timi Bomodi asked the Senators to focus on lawmaking and not the interpretation of laws.

“Section 147 of the CEMA act is clear on this issue. I think the senators are doing their jobs. The senators make laws but they should leave the interpretation of laws to the court. It is the job of the court to interpret laws.” Timi said.

“The Senators cannot make laws and at the same time interpret laws. If they are doing that, then they are usurping the authority of another arm of government. We operate a democracy and there are three arms of government in it. The Senators should not usurp the powers of another constituted authority.” He stated.

Meanwhile, the Public Relation Officer of the NCS, Joseph Attah, in an interview with Nigerian Tribune reiterated that operatives of Nigeria Customs Service can raid any particular place based on credible information.

“Is it today that Customs have been raiding markets? Why is there so much noise about the Ibadan raid? When Customs raided markets in Mubi in Adamawa State and another notorious market in Kano, why wasn’t there any outrage?” Attah stated.

“Section 147 of the CEMA law gives the Customs powers to do this. Again, comparing what happened in Ibadan to what happened in Katsina State is totally wrong. These are two different scenarios. What happened in Ibadan can only be compared to a raid that happened in Ilorin where a lady came forward to say her rice was locally made. After a careful examination and the discovery that the rice was not foreign rice, her bags were returned to her.”

“If the traders in Ibadan say theirs are not bags of foreign rice, let them come forward with proof. If their claims are genuine, their bags of rice will be returned to them.” He added.

When told by the interviewer that the Senate alleged they forcefully collected money from the rice traders, Attah revealed that only one of the bags contained some money, stressing that the sum of ₦522,350 was seen in one bag. He added that the money is safe and still intact.

“Whoever claims to be the owner should come and collect it with proof of ownership,” Attah concluded.

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