The Customs, Excise and Preventive Service (CEPS) has foiled an attempt by a group to smuggle 695 bags of fertilisers worth GH¢850 out of the country through Missiga, near Bawku in the Upper East Region.
Had the deal gone through, the perpetrators would have realised GH¢48,650 from the sales and GH¢27,800 profit.
Mr. Theophilus Ahulu, Senior Collector of CEPS at Missiga Customs Check-point, disclosed this to the media last Friday and said last Thursday, he and his colleagues saw a vehicle with a foreign registration number, XD 148 LSD approaching the Missiga barrier.
He said when the driver whose name was not disclosed to the press was signaled to stop, he feigned obeying the signal but sped off.
Mr Ahulu said the driver was given a hot chase by CEPS officers who succeeded in arresting him near Pasiga and brought back to Missiga, together with the vehicle.
He said the driver, during interrogation, said he was sending the fertiliser to Pusiga, but could not produce documents covering the items when asked to do so.
The vehicle and the fertiliser have subsequently been detained at the check point while the driver has been released to go and bring the documents.
Mr. Musah Abdulai, the Bawku Municipal Chief Executive (MCE) who hinted newsmen of the interception of the fertiliser, expressed concern about the failure of the CEPS officials to hand the case over to the police for investigations.
He has consequently directed that the driver, who was alleged to be the only person in the vehicle at the time to be arrested and handed over to the police when he returned with the documents.
It is recalled that the Bawku Municipality Security Committee (MUSEC) in the light of the high incidence of fertiliser smuggling in the municipality on Friday, July 8, held an emergency meeting and resolved to that the perpetrators face the full rigorous of the law.
The MUSEC, in a release at the end of the meeting and signed by Mr. Abdulai, who is also the chairman of the committee also described the practice as unpatriotic and calculated to sabotage the government’s fertiliser subsidy programme.
He, therefore, directed that with immediate effect, all fertilisers received in the municipality should first be reported to MUSEC and the security agencies for monitoring in order to curb smuggling.
Source: The Ghanaian Times/Ghana
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