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Customs C-G says days of corruption gone

Col. Hameed Ali(Rtd.) the Comptroller-General of Nigeria Customs
Service (NCS), on Monday said corrupt practices would no longer be tolerated,
be it by officers or clearing agents.

said made the assertion while addressing stakeholders at his maiden working
visit to the Apapa Area Command in Lagos.

days of corruption are gone. Anybody caught shall not be left to go scot-free.

am a stickler for the enforcement of the law.

is need for law and order, and it is important to follow the rules as they are
so that we all do not have problems,’’ he said.

said that his mandate as the Comptroller-General was to reform, structure the
service and importantly, collect revenue for government.

noted that it was possible for customs to clear goods from the port within 48
hours if there were no falsification of declaration of goods.

customs boss said that in carrying out his assignment, he would ensure that all
acts of cutting corners by some importers and agents were stopped.

said in that regard, anybody culpable would risk being jailed because the
greatest challenge had been that of non-compliance with the rules of operation.

however, assured the stakeholders of his readiness to deal with any officer
found wanting by demanding money from them.

also urged the agents to ensure that they got properly trained by way of
capacity building, to help them function adequately as demanded by new

said that had not come to make things difficult for operators, rather, he was
there to ensure orderliness and conformity to the law to promote trade.

raised issues on challenges they were facing in carrying out their operations.

Kayode Farinto, the Public Relations Officer of the Association of Licensed
Customs Agents (ANLCA) raised the issue of obsolete and faulty scanners at the

also complained of incessant alerts coming from multiple sources, as well as
the challenge of opening Form “M’’ due to the FOREX restriction by the Central
Bank of Nigeria (CBN).

want the Comptroller-General to look into the problem of obsolete scanners
being used at the port.

is also a problem now to raise Form M due to the CBN restriction on FOREX.

these cause delays in clearing cargo, so, cargoes are trapped in the port and
we all know what that means,’’ Farinto said.

urged the customs boss to make trade facilitation a cardinal point of his

also said the service should consider the law stating that operating customs
license be issued only to corporate bodies and not to individuals.

Chuks Ijemanze, a member of ANLCA at the Lillypond Command, lamented the lack
of transfer of containers to the off dock terminal.

said that the situation had left many customs operatives and agents alike,

Eugene Nweke, President of the National Association of Government Approved
Freight Forwarders (NAGAFF), said the trading public should be sensitised on
the need for compliance.

also called on the management of the customs service to ensure that the
Pre-Arrival Assessment Report be reviewed to become interactive.

called for infrastructure development to reduce physical examination that
consumes time.

also said it was important to have cargo profiled, and valuation done in due

Julie Ogboru, the Apapa Chairperson of the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and
Industry, complained of delays by terminal operators in positioning containers.

also complained of the undue delays by the shipping companies and the customs
in releasing containers.

said it was wrong for the customs to issue and still be the ones to query the
PAAR, which often led to delays.

said that if those issues were addressed, the problem of corruption would be
over and cargoes could be cleared within 48 hours.

to some of the issues raised, the Deputy Comptroller-General in charge of trade
and tariff, Akinade Adewuyi, said that from January 2016, agents would operate
with passwords.

said the passwords would check the fraudulent practices whereby some people use
other agent’s license to operate without their knowledge.

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