The Comptroller General, CG, of the Nigeria Customs Service, NCS, Col. Hameed Ibrahim Ali (rtd), has lauded the Service for its generation of over N2.2 trillion in 2021.
This was contained in a statement issued today, by the Service’s Public Relations Officer, Comptroller Joseph O. Attah.
TheFact Nigeria reports that the NCS generated the sum of N2,240,880,308,195.77 for the year 2021, surpassing the target of N1,678,715,016,014.00 which had been set for the year. The amount generated also surpasses the sum of N1,562,115,419,216.32 generated in 2020, and represents a 43.45% increase.
The Customs boss, commenting on the feat achieved, attributed it to resolute pursuit of what is right as well as willingness to adapt to changes brought about by global health challenges occasioned by covid-19.
Col. Ali further attributed the Service’s rising revenue generation profile to insistence on its reforms regarding:
• Strategic deployment of officers strictly using the standard operating procedure.
• Strict enforcement of extant guidelines by the tariff and trade department.
• Automation of the Customs process thereby eliminating vices associated with the manual process.
• Robust stakeholder sensitization resulting in more informed/voluntary compliance, and
• Increased disposition of officers and men to put national interest above selves.
He added that the relentless efforts of the Service to prevent the entry of items that could compromise the security of the country’s citizens, economy and well-being of the people had resulted in the seizure of 5,096 assorted items with a duty paid value of N13,796,646,685.60 and the arrest of 160 suspects at different levels of investigation or prosecution.
The Customs Chief also took note of other landmark achievements in 2021 that boosted national security and economy, high include the installation of 3 brand new scanners in Apapa, Tin-Can Island and Onne Ports, introduction of mobile tracker that enables individuals to remotely validate any declaration/payment and most importantly the status of any vehicle/cargo at any point, and introduction of Standard Operating Procedure for the use of Scanners.
Others were the acquisition of rugged gun trucks to secure anti-smuggling operatives in an increasingly hostile environment, and the E-customs take-off process currently at the stage of final signing of agreement.
“All these are expected to impact positively on trade facilitation, fight smuggling, block revenue leakages and significantly impact on revenue generation and national security.
NCS management recognizes the selfless efforts of Officers and Men who remained undaunted throughout the year resulting in these achievements”, Ali said.
While the CG commended all Officers and Men for their doggedness, he also charged all to do more in the New Year.
Ali further expressed sentiments if appreciation and commendation for the increasing numbers of compliant traders, noting that “compliance is a patriotic thing to do by citizens who desire a better nation”.
The Customs chief, while giving the assurances of the Service’s determination to continuously seek ways of making it easy for stakeholders to comply, prayed for the repose of the souls of operatives who paid the supreme price in the course of fighting smugglers. The living, he said, must sustain the fight in honor of the departed.
Meanwhile the Service has assured of its total committment to the course of protecting national security and economy, and calls on Nigerians, especially the business community to support the NCS “as our borders open to African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA) in order to benefit from the trade agreement and other cross border activities”, the statement said.