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Customs Corner

Customs Area 1 Command Port Harcourt Generates N92.3 Billion, Records Seizures Worth N112.6 Million In One Year.

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The Nigeria Customs Service, Area 1 Command Port Harcourt has generated the sum of ₦92,329,811,715.40 in the year 2022.

While briefing newsmen on some of the achievements and activities of the Command in the year 2022, the Customs Area Controller, Ibrahim Mohammed said there is an appreciable increase of ₦11,016,326,731.80 when compared to the collection in the year 2021. He said the surplus value represents a 12% increase in revenue collection.

The CAC noted that out of the total revenue indicated above, the Port Harcourt International Airport, Omagwa contributed a total sum of ₦11,355,952,513.00 which created a substantial boost to the revenue collected in the Command as against ₦8,022,099,800.00 collected in 2021.

Comptroller Ibrahim said, “It is important to note that this revenue feat was achieved despite the general low influx of cargoes into Port Harcourt port in 2022”.

“Furthermore, the collection of Excise duties from the two Excise Factories in the Command, International Brewery, and Nigeria Bottling Company also helped to boost the revenue base of the Command in 2022”. He added.

“The sum of ₦5,124,605,850.00 was collected in 2022 as against ₦4,186,308,066.00 generated in 2021, giving us a ₦938,297,784.00 increase, representing 18%”. He further said.

“This increase can be attributed to the Federal Government policy of payment of ₦10.00 Per Litre on all Non-Alcoholic, Carbonated, and Sweetened Beverages and an Additional ₦5.00 Per Litre as specific rates for Alcoholic drinks produced in the Country, this commenced on the 1st of June, 2022”. He emphasized.

On Export Activities, the export activities of the Command included Commercial and Crude Oil Exports, and a total of 17,126,930.06 Metric Tonnes were processed. This represents a 76% increase when compared to 4,127,874.74 Metric Tonnes recorded within the same period of 2021. The CAC also said, the Free on Board (FOB) of the corresponding period of 2022 amounted to $3,003,501,358.93 (which represents an increase of 34% as against that of 2021 which stood at $1,984,007,424.35, while Nigeria Export Supervision Scheme (NESS) fees paid in the year 2022 stood at ₦1,058,285,401.00, a remarkable increase of 64% above that of 2021, which was ₦372,822,763.46

On Anti-Smuggling Activities, the Command made the seizures and detention Four (4X20FT) containing 2,965 (25litres) Jerry Cans of Vegetable oil, concealed alongside other items such as granite stones, cartons of tiles, cartons of ceramics, cable wire rolls, Jotun Cover plus paints amongst other dutiable items.

Others are One (1X40FT) container found to contain Four Hundred and Eighty One (481) Bales of Second-hand Clothing, and One (1X20FT) container was examined and found to contain 700 packages of Machetes and 107 packages of shovels. The container was subsequently detained pending the production of an End-User–Certificate from the office of the National Security Adviser.

Comptroller Ibrahim said the measure was taken because the Country is in her electioneering period and items such as this must be given adequate approval before release.

He also stated that the combined duty paid value for the seized containers amounted to ₦112,682,893.90.

“These acts of wrongful importations are in clear violation of Schedule 3 of the Customs External Tariff (import prohibition list) and as such the cargoes are liable to outright seizures”. He said.

“A case file has been opened while other follow-up actions are in progress. I am using this opportunity to advise our trading public/stakeholders to be wary of people that could lure them into committing the act of economic sabotage because of ignorance of the extant provisions of the laws guiding the importation and exportation of goods. We would not shy away from enforcing the fiscal policy of the government”. He added.

Comptroller Ibrahim noted that one of the key factors that played a major role in leading to the Command’s achievements for the year under review was stakeholder engagement.

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“Strategically, agents were mandated to make proper and true declarations of all their cargoes in the Single Goods Declaration form and failure to adhere to that were meted with sanctions such as issuance of Demand Notices to curb the habit of underpayments of Duties by the owners of the consignments”. He noted.

He appreciated stakeholders and sister agencies for their support and collaboration, while also extending his profound gratitude to the management of Nigeria Customs Service under the able leadership of the CGC Col. Hameed Ali (Rtd).

“Let me use this medium to thank our critical stakeholders, other Government agencies operating in the Port, members of the media, and all other Port users for their unalloyed support and collaboration, your invaluable contributions cannot be taken for granted”. He said.

“Let me hereby appeal for continuous cooperation to move the Command forward, even as we look forward to achieving a higher revenue target in the year 2023”. He concluded.

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Customs Corner

Customs Kickstarts 2-Day ICT/Modernization Retreat for Management Team

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Author: Muhammad Bashir.

The Comptroller-General of Customs (CGC), Bashir Adewale Adeniyi, marked Friday, 1 March 2024, as a pivotal moment for his administration, heralding an era of digital transformation within the Service.

Addressing attendees at the 2-day NCS 2024 ICT—Modernization Management Retreat in Abuja, CGC Bashir Adewale reiterated his commitment to leveraging technology to streamline customs operations. He emphasized the importance of engaging stakeholders to ensure the seamless execution of this ambitious project.

“In 2024, we cannot afford to remain entrenched in outdated practices. Stakeholders are demanding a Customs Service that embraces technology to enhance efficiency and transparency.” CGC Adeniyi remarked.

Encouraging his Management Team, particularly in ICT, to champion the digitalization efforts, he urged them to harness internal resources to expedite the implementation of the electronic cargo tracking system.

He, however, emphasized that “It is imperative that we modernize every facet of the Customs Enforcement Ecosystem. We must also integrate technology to fortify our operations.”

Welcoming the CGC to the retreat, the Chairman of Trade Modernization Project Limited, Alhaji Saleh Ahmadu, lauded the CGC’s resolve, highlighting the pivotal role of trade in national development. He underscored that the modernization initiative would revolutionize the NCS’s operations, fostering a conducive environment for trade across Nigeria and the African continent.

Assistant Comptroller-General of Customs in charge of ICT/Modernisation, ACG Kikelomo Adeola, commended the CGC’s unwavering commitment to the project. She highlighted its significance in reshaping, digitizing, and modernizing the Service’s activities.

“Welcome to this landmark retreat, where we embark on a journey to recalibrate and modernize the Service, aligning it with international standards.” ACG Adeola stated.

The NCS 2024 ICT-Modernization Management Retreat sets the stage for a transformative era in the Nigeria Customs Service, signaling its readiness to embrace technological advancements in pursuit of operational excellence.

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Customs Corner

Customs Oyo/Osun Command Intercepts Fake Drugs, Others, Worth Over N1.8B

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…As Comptroller Ben Expresses Dedication to Protect Well-being of Citizens

Author: Lucy Nyambi.

The Nigeria Customs Service, Oyo/Osun Area Command, has intercepted sacks of fake Pharmaceutical drugs worth over N1.8billion.

Customs Area Controller Comptroller Ben Oramalugo disclosed this to reporters during a press briefing at the Command headquarters on Thursday, February 29, 2024.

Comptroller Ben stated that the Commands anti-smuggling activities have been strategically positioned to ensure the Federal Government’s policy on border closure is totally enforced by preventing the importation of prohibited items harmful to the great citizens of Nigeria. He also expressed the effort to prevent the exportation of essential food resources for individual economic gains by some economic saboteurs.

“We have successfully intercepted and seized contraband goods, including items that pose threats to economic stability and lives of citizens in the country,” He added.

Highlights of the seizures include 53 sacks of fake Pharmaceutical drugs with a Duty Paid Value (DPV) of ₦1,739,000,000.00, 1,309 pieces of used tyres with a DPV of ₦70,140,000.00.

Others are; 345 × 50kg bags of Foreign Parboiled Rice, 344 × 25 litres of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS), 4 Wraps (4 Kilogram) of Indian Hemp, 45 Sacks, 8 Sacks (9 Bales) of Used Clothings and Shoes, 34 Cartons of Foreign Wine, and 40 Bottles (5 litres), 21 Bottles (1 litres) of Foreign Vegetable Oil, all with a Total DPV of N1,890,022,931.00.

The CAC stated that, despite the prevailing economic challenges, the Command demonstrated resilience and efficiency in revenue generation by collecting the sum of N5,664,295,751.15 in February 2024. When added to the sum of N6,824,954,338.96, already collected for January 2024, the cumulative sum of N12,489,250,090.11 was collected so far for the fiscal year of 2024.

Comptroller Ben reiterated that all Borders within the Commands Area of Responsibility are still closed due to the Federal Government policy on Border closure and as such, “Command Officers remain vigilant and dedicated to preventing the smuggling of items that could compromise the health and well-being of our citizens.”

He appreciated the efforts of all Traditional Rulers, Local Government Chairmen and Key Stakeholders in both Oyo and Osun States, who have continued to enlighten their people about the negative effect of smuggling on the economy.

The CAC expressed the Nigeria Customs Service’s unwavering commitment to transparency, accountability, and the nation’s overall well-being. “We are confident that, through collective efforts, we can overcome the challenges we face and contribute to a more secure and prosperous future for Nigeria.”

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Customs Corner

COWA Collaborates with Youths, Women to Combat Drug Abuse

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Author: Iruoghene Abra, Muhammad Bashir.

The National President of the Customs Officers’ Wives Association (COWA), Mrs. Kikelomo Adeniyi, has expressed readiness to partner with the National Youth for Women Empowerment and Education in Nigeria as part of her plans to empower women through various ‘progressive’ programs aimed at improving their economic status.

Mrs. Kikelomo made this declaration during a meeting with members of the National Youth for Women Empowerment and Education in Nigeria, led by Ambassador Ibrahim Ibrahim, at the COWA National Secretariat on Thursday, 29 February 2024. She also emphasized her dedication to supporting women through educational initiatives.

In an address, Mrs. Kikelomo commended the organization’s executives for their tireless efforts in achieving the organization’s goals and objectives. She urged the young executives to continue their exemplary work in serving humanity.

Highlighting COWA’s activities, the President outlined initiatives such as providing support for women and children, empowering them with new skills and startup kits, and serving as the voice for the voiceless in society.

She emphasized that COWA stands as a pillar of support for wives and children during times of need, advocating for the rights of women who face similar challenges and discrimination in society.

Addressing the importance of mutual support, the COWA National President stressed the significance of women supporting each other to overcome obstacles and achieve their full potential.

She remarked, “The strength of a woman should not be measured by the challenges she faces but by her resilience in overcoming them.”

Continuing, she emphasized, “A healthy wife brings a wealthy life, as the well-being of women is crucial for the prosperity of households and communities.”

Mrs. Adeniyi highlighted the transformative power of education for women, stating, “When women are empowered, they contribute significantly to the economy, health, education, and all sectors of society, leading to positive change.”

She advocated for women to hold significant societal positions, citing their consistent ability to surpass expectations.

Mrs. Adeniyi reiterated COWA’s commitment to empowering women and children, expressing willingness to collaborate with the National Youth for Women Empowerment and Education in Nigeria to achieve shared objectives.

In response, the National Coordinator of the National Youth for Women Empowerment and Education in Nigeria, Ambassador Ibrahim Ibrahim, briefed COWA on the organization’s activities, which include encouraging women to embrace education and advocating against child abuse and domestic violence.

He highlighted the organization’s focus on supporting widows and children, facilitating skill acquisition, and caring for the elderly, praising Mrs. Adeniyi’s leadership and integrity expressing confidence in her ability to lead COWA to greater heights.

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