NEW NCS CUSTOMS WEBSITE

The new NCS customs web site is available at www.customs.gov.ng. It offers online consultation of Customs CET tariff, query for valid form M’s importer details and community members services”.

SPECIAL REPORT: UPDATE ON TEXTILES DESTRUCTION EXERCISE

Earlier this years, the federal Executive Council in its wisdom took the historic decision of destruction by burning, all seized and Forfeited Textile materials in Customs ware houses nation wide. Though it was a difficult decision, the Council had rationalized that it was the best option to salvage the Nigerian textile industry, which was caving in Under pressure from the smuggled foreign textiles. Abroad – based task force, headed by the Honourable Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, Malam Nasir el – Rufai was set up to carry out the exercise nation wide. Other members of the crack team include The Inspector – General of Police, Director-General of the state Security Services, ‘SSS’ Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC and the Comptroller – General of Customs. The Team Swung into action in April this year with the First exercise carried out in Jos, Under Plateau state the watchful eyes of representatives of Task Force members, led by Engineer Jimmy cheto, who represented the FCT Minister. 

At the Jos exercise, 335 Rolls of polyester materials, 468 bundles of Guinea brocade, 110 bundles of Lac material and 4 sacks of second hand clothing were burnt The exercise in Job was followed by another in Kano where textile materials seized by the kano / Jigawa Area Command and the Zone B Federal Operating Unit were destroyed. 

Representative of the FCT Minister Yusuf Tsaiyabu was on hand to preside over the destruction exercise witnessed by operatives from the Army, National Intelligence Agency, State ministry of environment in addition to the regular Committee members, Destroyed in the big fangs of fire were:

– 100 bales of Printed wax

– 500 Rolls of China white Cotton

– 75 bales assorted textile materials

– 3,062 rolls of China white,

– 162 bales Chares materials 

– 470 bales Shedda lace materials

The exercise in the far north was rounded up in Maiduguri with the destruction of 350 bales of assorted foreign textiles Seized by the Borno Yobe Command. 

The materials destroyed are: 

– 22 bales of second hand clothing

– 320 bales of assorted foreign textile materials and sacs of other textiles

And in Abuja, where Customs has built a new ware house to stock forfeited goods seized in and around the F C T, the logistics of the destruction stretched all the participants to the limits. the Operation which lasted four days commenced with the loading of the trucks at the Karu warehouse. 

The loaded trucks were them driven under armed escort to Mpape district of Abuja, where the destruction took place in the presence of the officials firm the FCDA, SSS, EFCC, Police, Abuja Environmental Protection Agency and Health workers 

Items destroyed in the Abuja exercise were a total of One thousand, One hundred and twenty-two bales of materials popularly known as “Georgie.” Other items destroyed during the Abuja Exercise are: 

– 145 bales Assorted foreign textiles

– 120 bales made-up dresses

– 805 bundles of trouser materials

– 38 bales Second hand clothing’s

– 90 Cartons baby Napkins  

– 5 bales of women crossest

Government incentives under the 2005 fiscal policy. 

Last week, the Lagos axis came into the picture as commands and unit in the zone have been credited with spectacular seizures of textiles early in the year. Chairman of the Committee, Malam Nasir el Rufai led other members of his team on an assessment visit to the warehouses in Lagos to see things for themselves. First port of call was the Ikeja Government warehouse, where seizures made by the Federal Operating unit were stocked. the minister and the entourage were conducted round the warehouse, already filled to the brim with fire-feited textiles, awaiting destruction. the situation has forced the Comptroller of the Unit, Umar Daura to retain seizures made recently on trucks and containers packed in the limited space at the warehouse. The minister also visited the Apapa and Tin-can island warehouse were several containers of Textiles were shown to the Honourable Minister as Seizures, At the end of the inspection, the Honourable Minister Fielded questions from Journalists. 

JOINT COMMITTEE ROUNDS UP VISITS TO BORDER AREAS

The sub- committee set up to work out the long- term requirements for an effective joint Police – Customs – Immigration Birder Patrol have rounded up its visitations to major Border areas in the Country. 

Headed by Ade Fadahunsi, Assitant Comptroller – General of Customs in charge of Enforcement and Drugs, and Comprising members from the 3 Participating Agencies, the Sub – Committee was mandated to assess the present state of lnfrastructure and logistic in the 3 services, and recommend long term requirements to sustain the patrols. 

In all the border stations visited the sub-committee members were confronted with stark realities of shortage or total lack of basic tools like patrol vehicles, communication gadgets, office and residential accommodation, portable water and health facilities. 

Despite this, Operatives of the three Agencies were quite enthusiastic in the performance of their duties while expressing hope the situation will be improved upon. 

At the Sahuda border station, Adamawa state, the customs and immigration barracks were totally dilapidated and unhabitable. At BANKI, all Security Operatives working in the border station.are all cramped up in one 3 bedroom building. The residences of the officers are completely sand witched by that of the villagers, leaving them at their mercies at the slightest provocation. 

At the Maigateri station, Jigawa state, the committee found that there’s no clear demarcation between the Nigeria-Niger border, while the community depends on one generating set belonging to Immigration. The only clinic in the Area belonging to Customs is yet to be equipped and properly staffed. 

At Baba Mutum Kastina state and Chikanda Kwara State, the committee observed that the Port Health service was located ahead of immigration and customs, which negates the international practice where Immigration is the first port of call for all travelers. 

At Jibya, the committee identified a large expanse of land belonging to the customs, which could be developed as the North-West axis Joint Border Patrol Headquarters because of the strategic importance of Jibya station. 

The committee also visited Ilela, Sokoto state, Kamba, Kebbi state, Babana Niger state, Chikanda Kwara state, Idiroko Ogun state, and Seme in Lagos state. 

BORNO GOVERNMENT BOOST CUSTOMS OPERATIONS

The Government and the people of Borno state have been commended for support which customs operatives serving in the state had enjoyed over a period time. 

The commendation was given in Government House Maduguri when the Zonal coordinator Zone D ACG Baba Gana Ali paid a courtesy call on the state Governor, Senator Ali Modu Sherriff. ACG Ali stated that the cooperation received from the state Government has enhanced the performance of customs personnel deployed in borders stations in the state. 

Governor Sherriff in his response acknowledged the performance of customs in revenue generation and national security, and promised continuous working cooperation with the Agency. 

The Zonal Coordinator who was on a working tour of Borno/Yobe Command also visited the palaces of the Shehu of Borno and the Shehu of Dikwa where he expressed gratitude of the service to the Royal Fathers for their support. He also solicited the assistance of the Royal fathers in educating their subjects on the fiscal policies of Government. The working four was rounded off with the visits to the Border stations in Backi, Gamboru, mile 90 and Bago-Doro. He inspected the Barracks and office accommodation of the varous on-going barracks construction project in the command. He however noted the deplorable condition of these facilities in Baga-Doro out station, promising to bring the situation to the attention of Customs Headquarters.

FOU AND BORNO COMMANDS RELEASE HALF YEAR REPORTS

A total of six hundred and ninety one seizures have been made in the first half of this year by the federal operations unit Zone A. Comptroller of the unit Alhaji Umaru Daura disclosed this while conducting Journalists on an inspection of seizures whose value is estimated at about one point fire billion naira while thirty-five suspects were arrested with the seizures. Meanwhile Comptroller Daura disclosed that the unit has continued to make seizures on a daily basis especially in the month of July Some of the seizures made include two trucks with registration number KH 396JJJ and XK 109JJJ intercepted at Badagry mile 2 Express way. On examination the vehicles were found to contain 9,184 pieces of packet shirts and 2,448 pieces of trousers, the other had on it 12,448 pieces of packet shirts. The duty paid value of both is about sixty-one point three six million . He also disclosed that three forty footer containers of prohibited items were also impounded within Lagos metropolis on information . Comptroller Daura while re-emphasising the determination of officers of the unit to suppress smugging activities in the Zone stated that customs also needs the co-operation and support of the public to successfully carryout us duties 

And in Borno/Yobe Command, a total of 19 seizures with a Duty Paid Value of over ₦89 million was made in the first half of the year. In its half-year report recently released, the command’s Area Controller, Dr. Bolaji Yusuff stated that the seizures are presently in connection with the seizures are presently being prosecuted at the Federal High Court Maiduguri. The seizures consist manly of Assorted foreign textile materials, soap and second hand vehicles. On revenue performance, the Command has collected a total sun of ₦28.5 million in the first 6 months of the year. The amount represents about 64% of the revenue targeted for the year 2005. Dr Yusuf attributes the encouraging revenue performance to the strict enforcement of the 100% physical examination of goods and the diligence of the work force who he said have imbibed fully the tenants of a Reformed Service.

ONNE COMMAND SEIZES 22 CONTAINERS OF CONTRABANDS

The Onne Port command has made a seizure of 22 containers of contraband imports in a special operation directed by the area controller John Atte. 

The operation was a follow up to intelligent reports, which indicated that some importers have brought in the offensive items in some cases, over a year ago, waiting for clear coast to remove them. 

Those seized include six twenty-footers and sixteen forty-footers of textiles, polyester fabrics, suit cases, furniture, men’s wears, pants and T-shirts, with the duty paid value of over Two hundred million naira. 

The recent sezuire brings to 66 the total number of containers seized by the command between January and June 2005.

KIRIKIRI LIGHTER TERMINAL (KLTC) COMMANDS SEALS UP SCRAP METAL WAREHOUSE

The Kirikiri Lighter terminal command has discovered two warehouses being used by smugglers to store scrap-metals that are smuggled out of the country. 

Comptroller of the command Gideon Gotip who led a team of customs officers to seal-off the warehouses, explained that it was attempt to locate the owner of the six containers of scrap-metals seized three weeks ago that led to the discovery of the warehouses. 

A Renault Truck with a Republic of Benin Registration number A3236RP already loaded with bagged scrap metals was found in the warehouse. 

Comptroller Gotip said six persons including the wife of the owner Mr. Odinaka Okonkwo have been arrested and arraigned in court. He said despite the arrest of the wife and workers Mr. Okonkwo has refused to turn up.

ZONAL COORDINATORS ASSESSES PERFORMANCE OF ZONE

Over sixty-seven billion naira were collected by customs area command under zone A between January and May this year. 

Co-coordinator of the zone, Assistant Comptroller-General, Adamu Rabiu, made this known while briefing the press on the performance of the zone this year. He said with this amount, the zone has a shortfall of about nine million naira in its target for the period. He attributed the shortfall of the concessions granted to some local manufacturers by Government and the ban imposed on importation of additional items. 

ACG Adamu Rabiu said that a total of 681 seizures with duty paid value of 2.1 billion naira were made by different area commands under the zone. 

He also said that most abandoned projects within the commands will soon be completed. He disclosed that the customs Headquarters have sent surveyors and valuers to estimate the level of work done so far on the projects and what is needed for the completion.

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