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Reps investigate N275b Customs contract

By on January 24, 2013

The House of Representatives has inaugurated a committee to probe the N275billion Destination Inspection Scheme (DIS) between the Nigerian Customs Service (NCS) and the Ministry of Finance.

Earlier, the house expressed serious concern about the implementation, management, and appropriation of the funds.

The Destination Inspection Scheme contracts were awarded to SGS Scanning Nigeria Limited, Cotecna Destination Inspection ltd, Global Scan Systems Limited and Webb Fountain (Nigeria) Limited. The four companies were mandated to provide different services at various ports.

The firms which were given the responsibility to Information and Communications Technology (ICT) services for NCS over the past 7 years were contracted on a build, operate and transfer basis.

The motion was raised by Bimbo Daramola (ACN, Ekiti) who stressed that it was necessary for the country to block outlets of its revenues, particularly through the ports.

He said, “This curious extension was without due process and against the overall interest of the country. Because of the extension, N21billion would be paid to the service providers irrespective of the quality of work and without handing over to the NCS, or making Nigerians the dominant players after so many years.

“Our concern and worry is that the revenue potentials of the country are not being realised as adequate taxes are not being paid by the Destination Inspection service providers.

“Needless to say that the collection of government revenue is also not being maximised as over $1billion of government revenue may have been lost.”

The Deputy speaker presided over the motion which ended up been referred to the House Committee on Commerce, and after a vote, the committee was granted four weeks to report back to the house.