The Federal Department of Fisheries (FDF) domiciled under the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development has intercepted 15 container loads of 17,650 cartons of rotten fish imported into the country from the United Kingdom.
The department identified the fish as Blue-White specie popularly called ‘Panla’.
Speaking during a press briefing on Saturday, Deputy Director and Head of Department, Fish Quality Assurance and Fish Disease Management Division of the FDF, Mrs. O. B. Adepegba, explained that each carton containing the fishes cost about N6,200.
According to her, “On the 26th of July, 2016, 42 container loads of fish were brought into the country from the UK and discharged at the Port & Cargo Handling Services (P&CHS) terminal in Tin-Can Island Port, Lagos State.
“On inspection, we discovered that 15 out of the 42 containers contained fish that were already rotten. The 42 containers were brought into the country by Food Solutions Limited and shipped by Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC).
“After the discovery, we raised the alarm and stopped their onward discharge from the Sifax Off Dock Terminal where they had been transferred to. We then called in the Lagos Waste Management Agency (LAWMA) to assist in proper destruction of the fish so that they don’t get into the market.
“The FDF has the mandate to intercept any unwholesome and dangerous marine food from entering into Nigeria. Nigeria exports over N50 billion seafood to the UK, why should they bring rotten seafood into our own country?
“We have told LAWMA that they will have to give us a video evidence of the fisheries destruction which is going to take place in Epe. We are also going to collect a certificate of destruction from LAWMA to be sure that none of the fish gets into the market.
“We have done about four seizures in 2016 but this is the biggest so far for us and we are not taking anything for granted over this latest seizure,” she added