MONROVIA, LIBERIA-The Liberia Revenue Authority (LRA), through its Customs Department, has seized a huge quantity of substandard pharmaceutical products recently smuggled into the Country.
The products, including Vitamins C, B-2, Cold Caps, and Amoxicillin among others were concealed in eighteen boxes on board three Guinean commercial buses.
The medicines valued at ten-thousand United States Dollars were discovered by officers of the LRA Anti-Smuggling and Investigation Unit (ASIU) following thorough search of the buses.
According to a press release issued Tuesday, May 12, 2020, the vehicles were intercepted following tipoff from Customs informants.
The medicines were imported into Liberia through the Liberian-Sierra Leonean Border post at Bo Waterside in Grand Cape Mount County, by four unlicensed individuals.
The seizure is part of ongoing regional customs enforcement operations under the auspices of the World Customs Organization (WCO) code name Cripharm V, aimed at combating the flow of illicit pharmaceutical products in the West African Sub-region.
Meanwhile, the LRA has turned over the substandard pharmaceutical products to the Liberia Medicines and Health Products Regulatory Authority (LMHRA) for onward inter-agency coordination and action.
Speaking during the turning over ceremony, Assistant LRA Commissioner for Customs Enforcement, Blamo Kofa, said:” The Authority remains committed to facilitating legitimate trade, while ensuring the protection of the Liberian people and foreign residents.”
He said:” Amidst the Coronavirus pandemic, the LRA remains vigilant in carrying out its mandate relative to cross border trade and to ensuring social protection for all residents of Liberia.”
Taking delivery of the medicines, LMHRA Managing Director, Keturah Smith, praised the LRA for the job well done, and called for more collaboration among governmental agencies to ensuring better health condition for the citizenry.
Director Keturah said:” This can be achieved by jointly working towards eliminating the illegal importation of pharmaceutical and harmful products into the Country.”