Illicit alcohol seized

The municipal health authority on Thursday seized 100 cartons of various spirits at a custom service and agent’s yard in Vadavada, outside Port Moresby.

The items were then destroyed at their Vector Control Division’s yard at Gordon’s. 

The operation was conducted in conjunction with PNG Customs and the Independent Consumer and Competition Commission (ICCC).

Upon learning about the undeclared alcohol items with other declared ones in a container, PNG Customs officers impounded it for formalities last Friday.

The importer, MH Suppliers Limited, is in China whilst PNG Customs Service and agent Cindy and Roy (PNG) Limited was doing its clearance.

NCDC Health officers were invited to verify the cartons of alcohol.

Senior Environmental Health Officer (Moresby South District), Silas Jonathan said they properly confirmed the items and condemned them on the spot.

He added that the items were not in compliance to the labelling requirements of the Food Sanitation Act and Food Sanitation Regulation respectively.

He further said they were condemned and seized because the labels were not in English and were not declared, proving there was an intention to smuggle.   

Jonathan commended the PNG Customs officers for identifying and detecting the smuggled items, urging them to do more.

He continued that the production and importation of fake products was a concern for local authorities, saying the surveillance and detection at points of entry should be tightened up. 

Jonathan also called on other relevant authorities manning the country’s entry points to step up their efforts to ensure the importation of fake products are reduced or eliminated.

He said bottles of spirit will each be tested later by NCDC Food Safety officers at a laboratory to verify the alcohol concentration and contents.

NCDC media on site witnessed that bales of toilet rolls and other products were stacked in front to hide the illicit alcohol.

Chief Health Surveyor Isowa More praised all the officers involved for successfully disposing the seized items.

Press release