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130 People Die in China Plane Crash

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130 People Die in China Plane Crash

A Chinese airliner with over 130 people onboard has crashed in the southern province of Guangxi, sparking a mountainside fire, state media reported.

The crash occurred on Monday afternoon (China time), with fire visible on site, according to Chinese state broadcaster CCTV.

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Rescue teams are en route to the accident scene but the casualties are unknown, CCTV reported.

According to social media posts, a China Eastern Airlines flight MU5735 from Kunming to Guangzhou went missing earlier in the day.

Read Also: Fire Service Warns Against Domestic Storage of Petrol Amid Scarcity

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Customs Corner

COWA Celebrates 2024 International Women’s Day, Fosters Growth in Productivity

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Author: Iruoghene Abra.

The National President of the Customs Officers’ Wives Association (COWA) and wife of the Comptroller General of the Nigeria Customs Service, Mrs. Kikelomo Adeniyi, has continually encouraged the productiveness of its members to attain their full potential.

Marking the 2024 International Women’s Day (IWD) on Friday, March 8, 2024, at the COWA Secretariat, the National President of COWA emphasized the importance of the IWD theme, ‘Inspire Inclusion.’ She urged women to celebrate diversity.

Mrs. Kikelomo Adeniyi stressed that women must overcome obstacles and stereotypes to achieve gender equality. She said they must also foster an environment that supports women’s growth and respects and values their contributions.

While speaking, the National President noted that COWA will keep pursuing the economic inclusion and empowerment of her members. Reminiscing COWA’s relaunch on February 15, 2024, the President announced a plan to train and empower 1,200 women to enable them to contribute meaningfully to their family’s economy and society.

According to the National President of COWA, “I am happy to note that in the Nigeria Customs Service, obstacles facing female officers have been eliminated daily. Women are given the opportunity to contribute meaningfully to national development”.

She further said, “It is particularly gratifying to note that today, we have quite a number of senior female officers in the management team. Some serving as Customs Area Controllers, Zonal Coordinators, and other strategic Units of the service.
I believe that someday, in the not-too-distant future, we will all be alive to see the emergence of a female comptroller General of Customs. I strongly believe that investing in women is good for families, communities, and the national economy. It is a powerful means to inclusion”.

Mrs Adeniyi revealed the COWA Skills Acquisition Center in Karu is currently under construction, where members will receive constant training and retraining. She urged members to be at the forefront of making the desired change.

The CEO of Madame Merola Global Enterprises, Madame Merola, implored the women to know their purpose as it is crucial to modern society. She said if women must be included in the places of authority, they must come out and show their abilities.

She highlighted the vitalities of the four Ps to include Purpose, Persona, Perception and People. She encouraged women to grow, evolve and be a better version of themselves. She advised them to communicate with others, stating that there are attributes they possess that others need and until they speak to others, they might not be recognized.

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Agriculture

Nigeria Customs Western Marine Command Hands Over Seized Marijuana Worth N700M to NDLEA

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Author: Abass Quadri.

The Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) Western Marine Command has handed over 120 sacks containing 10,551 loaves of Cannabis Sativa to the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA).

In a press briefing held at the command on Monday, 4th March 2024, the Customs Area Controller, Comptroller Odaudu Salefu, revealed that the seizure has a Duty Paid Value (DPV) of N704.5 million.

According to him, the seizure is a product of the command’s wide intelligence network.

He said, With suspects of these trades still at large, we will now work with NDLEA to effect the arrest of these wicked traders.

“The 120 bags handed over today were seizures in 3 different operations at Jegemo Island opposite Iworo Ajido Waterfront and Asipa Beach along Seme border on the 29th November 2023, 2nd December 2023, and 19th January 2024.”

Comptroller Salefu restated the Command’s commitment to safeguarding the Nation’s economic interest by working with sister agencies whenever necessary.

He also called on all Nigerians to desist from illicit and illegal cross-border trade practices as it is terrible for the general economy, health and welfare of citizens.

Receiving the items, the NDLEA Commander, Paul Ahom, appreciated the CAC for following the existing synergy between the NCS and the agency.

He assured that the NDLEA will continue to build on its partnership with Nigeria Customs in a bid to curb the smuggling of drugs into the country.

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Customs Corner

Customs Collaborates DG TAXUD EU For Efficient Export Monitoring, Trade Facilitation

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Author: Abra Iruoghene.

The Nigeria Customs Service (NC) has collaborated with the Directorate General Taxation and Customs Union (DG TAXUD) of the European Union (EU) for efficient export monitoring and trade facilitation.

During a meeting that took place at the Corporate Headquarters of NCS on February 27, 2024, the Comptroller General of Customs, Bashir Adewale Adeniyi, announced that the service is collaborating with DG TAXUD for efficiency in Export Monitoring and documentation.

With the Nigeria Customs Service as the competent authority for rules of origin, the Comptroller General assured that the Service will do all it can to facilitate the process, adding that peace will prevail if trade is permitted to flourish.

Notwithstanding, the CG acknowledged the initiative as a welcome idea working towards economic union by bringing the two economic blocks together. He said the initiative of the Registered Exporters is a welcome development.

CGC requested a framework between Customs and DG TAXUD that can be used to verify and validate export commodities. He stated the service is interested in a digital platform that will enhance the validation of documents.

According to the Comptroller General, “As part of our outreach program, we are also working with other agencies of the Nigerian government so that we maximize these opportunities. In the past, we’ve had goods from Nigeria returned because of quality, storage, and all of that”.

He said, “We’ve moved to establish a ‘one-stop-shop’ export seat for export documentation so that it will help us reduce the time taken for Nigerian exporters to get their goods out of our port. Earlier this month, we launched the Time Release Studies, which we are targeting towards importing of goods and how much it takes for businessmen to clear their goods in the port”.

Still speaking, he said, “We are also going to launch a similar exercise to have a scientific measure of how long and how much it costs our businessmen to export their products. The most important part is to identify if there are bureaucratic modules, procedures, or laws that are creating delays so that people can get their things off our port with speed”.

The CGC said, “My intention for us is to have a system that is better, faster, and easier for us to confirm your request within a very short period. I want us to talk about exportation like we all talk about importation”.

Also speaking, Gary Wilkinson, who works in the Rules of Origin in the Directorate-General Taxation and Customs Union (DG TAXUD) in the EU, said the tariff discount for exported products is 4 percent, so when Nigerian products are exported, they get a discount.

He emphasized that as part of the Generalized System of Preference (GSP) scheme, they occasionally travel to developing countries to ensure that products sent to the European Union are indeed of Nigerian origin.

He stated that specific rules have been put in place to ascertain the origin of products under the GSP scheme. He said all their trade agreements are based on cooperation between the two Customs departments.

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