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FG to seal cold rooms with imported frozen fish



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The Federal government through the Ministry of Agriculture and rural development says it will soon clamp down of cold rooms where imported frozen fish are stored.

According to Minister of state for Agriculture and rural development, Heineken Lokpobiri, smugglers bring in all sorts of frozen fish through the land borders which is prohibited and sabotages the efforts of the government, despite the extant fish importation policy and prohibition of frozen farmed fish importation into the country.

according to him, government is vigorously in pursuit against smuggling and heavy bill of fish importation into the country.

“The smuggling of unhealthy frozen fish into the country is detrimental to the progress being made toward guaranteeing the good health and nutrition of Nigerians”, he stated.

The minister said the government will partner with the Nigeria customs service, Nigerian Navy, and the Nigerian marine police to seize, arrest and fine importers of frozen foods into the country through the land borders and also seal cold rooms where they are sold.

“We will continue to partner with the Nigeria Customs Service, the Navy, marine policy to see how we can clamp down on the offenders.

“Even those that have brought the produce into the country, we are setting up a taskforce that will go round different cold rooms, like what Customs is doing to rice”.

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He said the offenders would pay a fine of $250,000 or get five years imprisonment or both in addition to the forfeiture and destruction of the produce as stipulated by the law.

Lokpobiri, while listing some of the fishes imported said that the move was to boost local production and exports, and disclosed that the country’s annual demand on fish was currently at 3.2 million tonnes and deficit at 1.9 million tonnes.

According to him, the Department of Fisheries and Aquaculture in the ministry is the only competent authority empowered by the Nigeria Sea Fisheries Act to issue distant water fishing licence for the importation of frozen fish into Nigeria.

“The department does not issue licence for the importation of frozen farmed fish into Nigeria through the land borders.

The minister said that consumption of those imported frozen foods were major cause of some health challenges being experienced in the country.
By Akin Obakeye

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  1. Balarabe musa

    March 10, 2017 at 8:52 am

    So how do they differentiate between foreign fishes and local fishes? The imported fishes are causes of health hazard truly and we must stop that as we have more than enough fishes to eat in Nigeria.

    • yanju omotodun

      March 10, 2017 at 9:14 am

      There some species of fishes we don’t have in Nigeria and that’s why they are importing most of these fishes.


        March 10, 2017 at 9:48 am

        What nonsense are you saying? So is it a must to eat all species of fishes in the world and if we must eat them, while not get their fingerlings into our rivers.

  2. Margret Dickson

    March 10, 2017 at 8:59 am

    It is even ridiculous to see Nigerians import fish at this stage of our development, we have rivers with fishes almost everywhere. The people importing fishes are wicked and heartless!

  3. Animashaun Ayodeji

    March 10, 2017 at 9:03 am

    Importation of fish into the country should be really frowned at, Nigerians need to stop all these useless importations that are degrading our economy. I’m glad this is a government that understands the outcome of all these unnecessary importations, and it’s ready to amend things for the betterment of Nigerians.

    • Roland Uchendu Pele

      March 10, 2017 at 10:21 am

      Fishes in Nigeria are even better than their UK and US counterparts. I have done a test on both and discovered that we spend money unnecessarily in importing fishes.

  4. Joy Madu

    March 11, 2017 at 4:43 am

    Am not surprise because Nigeria believe on anything importation that is why they can’t come out of recession.The fish in Nigeria is better than the imported one

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