Onne Customs generates N25.5bn in 2019
.Says smugglers are economic saboteurs
By Silas Onuoha
The Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), Onne Command has started 2019 fiscal year on a promising note, as the Command collected ₦25.5billion in the first quarter of 2019.
The Customs Area Controller (CAC) of Onne, Comptroller Aliyu Galadima Saidu, disclosed this in the press statement signed and made available to news men, by the Public Relations Officer (PRO) of the Command, Ifeoma Onuigbo Ojekwu.
The CAC said that the ₦25.5billion, when compared to ₦18.8billion generated in the first quarter of 2018, accrued to 26.2 percent increase in revenue collection by the Command.
The words of Comptroller Saidu, “The Command generated a total of N94 in 2018, which is about 80percent of allotted annual target of ₦117.8billion. A comparative review of the preceding year shows that the Command realised ₦373.2million more than it did in 2017, bringing it to about 0.35percent increase in revenue collection”.
“Specifically, when relating the revenue collected and seizures to the operational strategies used, I am happy to inform you that the Command focused mainly on intelligence risk profiling of our system with 100 percent physical examination of cargo at the various Terminals and Sheds; sensitising stakeholders on the benefits of compliance; application of due diligence and professionalism in documentation and examination of cargoes. Most importantly, building synergy with other relevant government agencies, such as National Agency for Food Drugs Administration and Control, NAFDAC, Standards Organisation of Nigeria, SON, Port Health, National Drugs Law Enforcement Agency, NDLEA and other sister security agencies, especially Navy, Police and Immigration for information, which has proven to be useful at crucial moments”.
“It was on the basis of the foregoing that the Command recorded 61 remarkable seizures of various items such as 9 x 40ft containers of Tramadol, Hyergra, Diclofenac and Analgesic Tablets of different types; 64 of 20 containers of foreign parboiled rice and other items, such as military uniforms and boots, with a total Duty Paid Value, DPV, of ₦1.6billion”.
“A comparative review of the seizure profile of 2017 revealed that the year 2018 surpassed with 37 seizures and DPV of ₦1,147,142,275, bringing to about 60.7percent increase in seizures and 70.9percent increase in DPV, as regards general enforcement.
“More so, we seized 126 containers, which is 81percent increase of the 24 containers confiscated in the preceding year, 2017.
“All these seizures followed various infractions such as false declaration, concealment, wrong classification, importation without end user certificate and complete disregards for import and export guidelines with intent to smuggle in illicit goods”.
He frowned, “It should be noted that smuggling poses a big threat to economic growth and national security. That is why those who engage in it are considered as economic saboteurs. They are those destroying the nation’s economy, because they want to evade payment of import duty, to bring in items posing security risk to the nation.
“It is worrisome and very unfortunate that despite the wide awareness on the consequences of smuggling on economic growth and development, some citizens still find joy in perpetuating this evil act only for their personal gains”.
“The Command worked in synergy with other Customs Units such as the Customs Intelligence Unit, CIU, Valuation, CG’s Strike Force and Post Clearance Audit, PCA, to achieve maximum compliance to extant laws on import and export for increased revenue generation and anti-smuggling feat.
“Again, the Command recorded high level of compliance on export declarations. A total of 136,973,413.92 metric tonnes of exported goods with total Free On Board, FOB, value of $1,126,516,635.9 which is equivalent to ₦409,083,251,160.73 at #363.14 per dollar was realized”.