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Importers Advocate for Merger of Customs Commands in Apapa

By on October 5, 2012

Customs Comptroller-General, Abudullai Dikko

The Nigerian Importers Advocacy and Support Group (NIASG), a new body has requested for the union of the Lilypond Customs Command into the Apapa Area One Command of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS).
The representatives of NIASG called for this union, that it was to guarantee flawless transactions at the Lagos Port Complex, Apapa.

The Executive Secretary of NIASG, Mr. Adebayo Famoroti in his remark, stated that, “If you look at Lilypond now, you see that containers are not going there again because people now prefer to receive their containers from the main terminal but the main problem for us importers is that when you make any payment at Apapa Port and your container is transferred to Lilypond, it becomes almost impossible to clear your consignment from Lilypond because until that payment is received at Lilypond, you will not be able to clear your container. We believe that if Lilypond is under Apapa Command then this kind of problem will not arise.”
He complained that the many linked terminals under the Tin Can Customs Command does not have separate Customs Command but are all under the same umbrella. This development has permitted seamless transactions at the bonded terminals, he said.
He attributed the low level of activities at Lilypond to the lack of a unified Customs Command at Apapa Port, “Bonded terminals are an extension of the main port facilities, and the Customs at the main ports should supervise their operations,” Famoroti said.
Famoroti advised against target setting for Customs Commands in the country, adding that the policy might drive custom officers to go any mile to beat the target.
His words: “There should be a global revenue target for Customs at the national level and that is what all Customs Officers across the country should work towards. This is because by the time you now push the commands to realise some impossible target then you are creating a lot of problem and promoting unhealthy competition among them. Nigeria Customs is one and should remain so.”