…Seeks intervention of CGC
Worried by the raging threat to the operations of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) at the Ikorodu Terminal/ Government Warehouse, the National Association of Government Approved Freight Forwarders (NAGAFF) has called on the Board of the NCS to urgently restore the Terminal/ Government Warehouse to its original masterplan so as to meet the aspirations and yearnings of industry stakeholders and Nigerians in general.
The National Publicity Secretary, NAGAFF, Mr. Stanley Ezenga, in a statement issued in Lagos on Saturday noted that the association was not pleased that the seeming failure of the NCS to perform its statutory responsibilities had left the Ikorodu Terminal/Government Warehouse in a state where expired and decomposed overtime or seized/abandoned goods litter everywhere, constituting both environmental and health hazards to officers and men of the Service, as well as members of the community in general.
Ezenga pointed out that the place had become abode for life-threatening reptiles like alligators, snakes among others.
“Our Association is therefore imploring the Board of the NCS to invoke Sections 4, 5, 6, 12, 13 and 97 of the Customs and Excise Management Act (CEMA) Cap 45, LFN 2004, as amended, which jointly empowered the Board to give direction in the management and administration of the Service as well as the Legal Notice No 700 of 1959 which defined what Government Warehouse and its establishment stands to serve and protect.
“We wish to particularly point the attention of the Customs Board to Section 31 of CEMA, as amended, which spells out the cargo dwell time at Port Terminals or Government approved Warehouse, and the required due time publication to enable owners of such goods to take delivery, with its attendant forfeiture of such goods to the Government, if they fail to do so”, he said.
While noting that the corruption associated with the issue of rents and dues on containerized cargoes at the Ikorodu Terminal/Government Warehouse, especially since 2007 when massive movements of containers to the place commenced was another source of concern to the association, Ezenga urged the Board to launch a massive inquiry to unravel where the huge rents and dues meant for the Government of Nigeria had entered, in the last 14 years.
“While pledging our continued support for the NCS, we urge the Comptroller General of Customs, Col. Hameed Ali (Rtd) to quickly intervene at the Ikorodu Terminal /Government Warehouse to restore normalcy, in the interest of the Nigerian economy and the society at large”, he submitted.
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