Beware: Poisonous Fish Is In The Market
If you love eating fish, you may consider being wary of eating the delicious protein.
Smugglers have allegedly flooded the market with poisonous varieties that could kill you.
The harmful frozen fish, the federal government said, were illegally brought in through the land border.
Am wondering, where were the customs officials?
According to the government, the smugglers were bringing in all sorts of frozen fish such as tilapia, red pacus, river bream, pangassius, horse mackerel, sardine, and croaker.
It, however, vowed to find the smugglers and punish them. It added that anyone found importing frozen fish without licence from the Department of Fisheries and Aquaculture of the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development risks going to jail for at least five years.
Defaulters could also pay a fine of 113 million Naira.
The Minister of State for Agriculture, Senator Heineken Lokpobiri, said that those involved in the act are sabotaging the efforts of government despite the extant fish importation policy.
Lokpobiri, who spoke at the Abuja headquarters of the FMARD, said the circulation of unhealthy fish and fishery products in Nigerian market had resulted in dangerous health implications such as kidney disease and cancer.
“It has become necessary for the Federal Government through the FMARD to address the Nigerian public on the sale of smuggled unhealthy frozen fish, especially farmed tilapia, in Nigeria. These smuggled frozen fish are very harmful to the health of Nigerians.
“The ministry is using this medium to warn all those involved, colluding, aiding and abetting these nefarious activities to stop or face the full wrath of the law of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
"Importation of fish without licence attracts five-year imprisonment or a fine of $250,000, or both, in addition to forfeiture and destruction of the vessel and its products.”
Lokpobiri added, “For the avoidance of doubt, the Federal Ministry of Agriculture has put in place measures to arrest, detain and prosecute offenders as provided in the Sea Fisheries Act Cap S4 laws of the Federation 2004. Such persons will be dealt with as criminals and economic saboteurs'', he said.