16 June 2014, Lagos – Customs Area Controller, Jibrin Zakare, who was particularly excited about the revenue figures for the months of April and May described the figures as the highest so far in the history of the Customs Command.
A breakdown of the figures showed that the sums of N26.3bn and N26.5billion were recorded in the months of April and May respectively.
The Command had recorded N21.5bn, N21.6bn and N16bn for the months of January, February and March respectively.
Zakare who spoke to THISDAY attributed the high revenue yield so far to what he said was the glaring success of the Destination Inspection regime under the Customs administration.
The Controller also said that the high revenue in the months of April and May was a clear manifestation of the fact that the Customs Service has overcome the initial teething problem associated with the issuance of Pre-Arrival Assessment Report (PAAR) in the ports as part of the Destination Inspection regime.
He said that he was happy that the freight forwarders and their importers were beginning to understand the documentation procedure associated with PAAR, adding that this has contributed in the smooth sailing experience in goods delivery as far as the Command was concerned.
“I am happy that the importers and their agents are beginning to understand and follow the procedures required when they have goods to clear. They are getting it right, and I am particularly happy about this development. And because they understand the procedure, they are also complying by presenting genuine documents to the banks who also send same to our Centres which help in transmission and eventual issuance of PAAR,” he said.
Zakare said that part of what happened in the past that led to delays in the issuance of PAAR for which many people were trying to crucify the Customs was wrong information provided by importers and their agents.
He commended the Comptroller-General of Customs, Alhaji Inde Dikko Abdullahi, and his management team, for their efforts in dealing with all forms of sabotage experienced initially during the take-off of Destination and introduction of PAAR.
He disclosed that all the saboteurs have been removed from the PAAR centres, one of the reasons which he attributed to the success being recorded in the clearing system.
He also identified the good welfare package introduced in the Customs by the Comptroller-General as playing a big part in the success as far as high revenue generation is concerned in the ports.
“No officer has excuse not to perform because as far as we are concerned, every officer is well remunerated to offer high quality service. This is helping in increasing productivity in the Customs system as you can see in our revenue generation,” he said.
Zakare disclosed that some goods which importation contravened trade regulations have been seized by the Command. He identified the items as furniture, vegetable oil, bags, women shoes, among others.
He advised importers to ensure that they do not go contrary to trade rules and regulations, adding that those who chose to circumvent the system by embarking on trade crime would be visited with the wrath of the law.
The Controller also identified increasing crowd in the ports environment as worrisome, adding that the Command has been trying to control the situation.
Noting that this was as a result of unemployment in the country, he added that though the Command has been raiding them from time to time, the crowd builds again and again.
– This Day