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Customs distribute seized food items starting with Lagos

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The Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) has launched the distribution of seized food items, with a special focus on rice for Lagos State residents.
The official announcement was made through the NCS official X handle (formerly Twitter).

According to the Comptroller General of Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), Bashir Adewale Adeniyi, benefiting from the opportunity is contingent upon the verification process, which requires individuals to present their National Identification Number (NIN).

Adeniyi, who led the flag-off of the rice disbursement programme in Lagos on Thursday, explained that the distribution strategy aimed to provide direct access to beneficiaries in areas where Customs operations are actively carried out.

The  Nigeria Bureau of Statistics’ (NBS) selected Food Price Watch for January 2023 shows that the average price of 1kg of rice (locally sold loose) on a year-on-year basis rose by 19.67 per cent from N430.21 in January 2022 to N514.83 in January 2023.

Also, on a month-on-month basis, it increased by 1.71 per cent from N506.17 in December 2022. Similarly, the average price of 1kg of onion bulb rose by 21.28 per cent on a year-on-year basis from N368.10 in January 2022 to N446.44 in January 2023, while on a month-on-month basis, the price rose by 2.41.

The average price of vegetable oil (1 bottle, specified bottle) stood at N1,183.67 in January 2023, showing an increase of 28.55 per cent from N920.76 in January 2022. On a month-on-month basis, it rose by 1.89 per cent from N1,161.76 in December 2022.

According to NBS), the average price of 1kg beef boneless stood at N2,418.91 in January 2023.

This indicated that on a year-on-year basis, the price rose by 29.72 per cent from the value recorded in January 2022 (N1,864.70), and 1.75 per cent on a month-on-month basis from N2,377.29 in December 2022.

Whilst the average price of 1kg Beans brown, sold loose, increased on a year-on-year basis by 19.06 per cent from N498.85 in January 2022 to N593.96 in January 2023. On a month-on-month basis, the average price of this item increased by 1.33 per cent in January 2023.

According to Adeniyi,  NCS received government approval to sell the seized food items at discounted prices, contingent upon the verification process, which requires individuals to present their NINs.

He emphasised that transparency and accountability would be the hallmark of the activities, and urged beneficiaries to refrain from reselling the rice in markets or diverting it for purposes other than domestic consumption.

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