NAFDAC Smashes Syndicates Of Smugglers | Independent Newspapers Limited
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NAFDAC Smashes Syndicates Of Smugglers

Posted: Jul 17, 2016 at 5:11 pm   /   by   /   comments (0)

Seizes 880 Bags Of Explosives Raw Materials
Chioma Umeha
Lagos-The National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) has confiscated 880 bags x 25kg of Urea Formaldehyde Resin, a chemical compound for manufacturing explosives and arrested a Chinese, Mr. Zhao Shou Chum and his syndicate, who were alleged to be responsible for smuggling the dangerous substance  into the country through the seaport.
Quizzed alongside the Chinese, who was said to be the Managing Director of Six Six Manufacturing Global Services Ltd, was his clearing agent, Mr. Christian Ohia of Actus Fidel Nigeria Ltd, for allegedly smuggling containers of the controlled substances without the requisite NAFDAC chemical import permit for controlled substances.
It was also alleged that the company through its syndicate smuggled the 2 x 20ft containers of Urea Formaldehyde Resin powder to an unknown location outside Lagos. Urea-formaldehyde resin is any of a class of synthetic resins obtained by chemical combination of urea (a solid crystal obtained from ammonia) and formaldehyde (a highly reactive gas obtained from methane).
The Acting Director-General of the agency, Mrs. Yetunde Oni, addressing journalists on Wednesday, at NAFDAC headquarters in Oshodi,  Lagos, where the seized containers have been kept,   confirmed that those arrested have given investigators useful information and are assisting NAFDAC to unravel their supply chain.
The NAFDAC boss, who reiterated her administration’s resolve to work assiduously as a team to ensure more efficient service delivery in safeguarding the health of the nation, said vigilant NAFDAC operatives at the seaport intercepted and wrote a stop/seizure notice on the 2 x 20ft containers of Urea Formaldehyde Resin purported to be sodium sulphate, imported by Six Six Manufacturing Global Services Ltd without the requisite NAFDAC Chemical Import Permit for controlled substances.
She said the company through its syndicate smuggled the product to an unknown location outside Lagos. “The effective intelligence work of the combined efforts of NAFDAC officers at the Ports Inspection Directorate as well as Investigation & Enforcement Directorate resulted in the discovery of the company’s warehouse located at Omu-Ijebu, in Ogun State, where the containers were kept.”
She further explained that  due to the significant security risk of the chemical hence the Federal Government strictly controls its importation and use, adding that only two companies registered by NAFDAC are allowed to import  the substance.
She said: “Urea formaldehyde resin is a controlled chemical. The chemical can be used for manufacturing fertilisers for agricultural produce. It is also used as adhesives in wood. However, it can be easily converted as explosive device by unscrupulous elements such as the Boko Haram terrorists. This was why the Federal Government placed a ban on it. However, the ban was lifted because of its agricultural use and only two companies working with NAFDAC and other relevant authority have been granted permit to import the chemical. Six Six Manufacturing Global Service has no such permit.”
Meanwhile, one of the arrested syndicates, Mr. Zhao Shou Chum, who spoke to Independent, said that the chemical was imported into the country for adhesives and not for making explosive.
The agency’s acting Director-General, however reassured the public that the agency would continue the investigation in order to unravel the supply chain of the controlled chemical as well as the intended purpose of the smugglers.