Thursday, April 25, 2024

Customs intercepts explosives-making chemical in Ogun

20 drums of Calcium Carbide smuggled into the country from neighbouring countries have been intercepted by men of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), Federal Operations Unit (FOU), Zone A of Ikeja, Lagos.

Speaking to journalists, the acting Customs Area Controller, FOU, Zone A, Ag. Compt. Hussein Ejibunu, said the drums were intercepted in Ogun State, adding that 41 pieces of military camouflage bags were also intercepted.

According to Ejibunu, the calcium carbide is highly inflammable as it can be used to manufacture Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) and could cause danger to life and property.

He further disclosed that the carbide is controlled and must come with an end users certificate from the office of the National Security Adviser (NSA).

He said, “20 drums of Calcium Carbide were seized in Ogun State. It is instructive to emphasise that such importation raises concerns of national security. This is because it is a chemical used in the manufacture of improvised explosive devices (IEDs) and could cause danger to life and property.

“Allowing things like this chemical into the society uncontrollably, could create serious security challenges for the country because carbide is highly flammable, reactive and can cause explosion hazards when mixed with other chemicals and exposed to water or moisture. It forms flammable acetylene gas that could be used to endanger lives by lawless persons.

“This is aside from other health hazards, the chemical on exposure can irritate the mouth, nose and throat if not properly handled. Inhaling Calcium Carbide can irritate the lungs. Higher exposures may cause a build-up of fluid in the lungs and could lead to an emergency medical situation. Its importation is, therefore, strictly controlled from the office of the National Security Adviser (NSA),” Ejibunu said.

Also, the Customs chief disclosed that the unit intercepted nine truck loads of foreign parboiled rice, 56,725 litres of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS), also known as Petrol, among others worth N579.4million.



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