Consequently, the NCS has placed all the nation's gateways, including the seaports, land borders and airports, on red alert to checkmate the smuggling of arms and ammunition into the country.
The latest seizure made it the fourth time customs officials intercepted smuggled pump action rifles now totaling 2,671 pieces.
The NCS had in January seized 661 pieces of pump action rifles, which were found in 49 boxes.
In May, the operatives intercepted 440 pieces of assorted pump action rifles and on September 11, 2017, another 1100 rifles were intercepted at the Tin Can Island. All of these originated from Turkey.
Ali has therefore directed all customs formations at the gateways to be on the alert and ensure a 100 per cent examination of cargoes entering the country.
Apparently worried about the rising rate of arms smuggling, the comptroller-general said the situation had forced the customs to look beyond the ease of doing business policy directive of the Federal Government, in order to ensure the security of lives and property of the citizens.
According to him, the arms were concealed in a 20-foot container with No. CMAU189817/8 falsely declared as elbow plumbing plastics on its bill of lading.
The importer of the cargo is Great James Oil and Gas Limited, and the vessel is MV Arkas Africa owned by Hull Blyth. Ali said:
Having developed the profile of most important items coming from Turkey, the controller of Tin Can Island Customs command, Bashar Yusuf, had insisted on a 100 per cent examination of any container that comes in. The result is what we see on the ground.
It is an understatement to say that we are being threatened as a country and our findings have shown that this dastardly act is perpetrated by Nigerians. There are syndicates who are in Turkey and manifesting this. We are yet to get to the bottom of the whole thing. Are these meant for commercial purposes? Are they meant to be used by insurgents, agitators as they called themselves, or kidnappers? That aspect of the investigation is going on and I am sure that the State Security Service and other agencies will unravel these
Ali promised the NCS would leave no stone unturned in taking the issues beyond the boarders of Nigeria.