Tincan Customs implements ease of doing business with reforms
.Dispute committee, help desk effective tools
.We achieve N343bn revenue through innovation- PRO
By Udeme Clement
“The Customs Area Controller, CAC, Tincan Island Port Command of Nigeria Customs Service, NCS, Comptroller Musa MBA, has instituted reforms targeted at ensuring that the Presidential Directive, on ‘Ease of doing business’ is not only accomplished but seen to be fully accomplished in all ramifications.
“These were the words of the Public Relations Officer, PRO, of the Command, Mr. Uche Ejesieme, in a chat with Financial Business correspondent on reforms and measures put in place by the current CAC, to enhance maximum revenue generation for the Federal Government and trade facilitation, in line with global best practice.
The PRO spoke further, “The CAC had several meetings with stakeholders, aimed at bringing them to the same page on expectations of Customs and stakeholders alike.
“This is working extremely well and accounted for the N343billion the Command realised in 2018 fiscal year, which amounted to 97 percent revenue collection. That led to the World Customs Organisation, WCO, Award conferred on Comptroller Musa MBA by WCO”.
He added, “On this note, the CAC would always appreciate contributions of our stakeholders, particularly those who have the knack for compliance with the fiscal policies of government on trade.
“Infact, in fairness to most stakeholders, the Command would like to score them high for aligning with the vision and mission of the Comptroller-General of Customs, CGC, Ali Hameed, being demonstrated by the CAC of Tincan Command.”
The PRO enthused, “For 2019, we make bold to state very emphatically that with the support of our stakeholders, we have started on a very sound footing. Thus, this is the reason why we would continue to make the clarion call for their support in complying with fiscal policies not to be seen as highhandedness, as insinuated in some quarters.
He pointed out, “It may interest you to note that government depends so much on Customs revenue to execute capital projects across the country. Therefore, Customs under CGC Ali cannot afford to be aloof or to let our guards down.”
Ejesieme said, “We would continue to synergise with stakeholders who comply with trade regulations, by ensuring all impediments to trade value chain are removed.
Remember, ‘He, who goes to equity, must go with clean hands’.
“As far as we are concerned, we want to state that, the Command has various platforms through which stakeholders and the public can channel issues confronting them. Such platforms include Dispute Resolution Committee, Help Desk, domiciled under PRO’s unit, with the CAC as Chief Help Desk Officer, among other units.
“Also, we have a dedicated line to members of the public, which opens 8am to 6pm, Monday to Friday, every week. It is an innovation from the CAC.
“Few minutes ago, I’m happy that you witnessed issues brought before the Dispute Committee. The first issue was from; ‘AAA Logistics’, a Company that imported raw materials for manufacturing of energy drink in powder form, in the process of which dispute occurred between the company and Customs at exit point.
“The dispute was based on appropriate classification of the consignment. The Committee convened and immediately a decision was taken on the basis that, the item is not instant drink but raw materials in powder form, which would undergo other chemical processes before consumption.
“On that note, the Committee decided the case immediately in favour of the appellant”.
He stated, “The second case came from; ‘Air-water Services limited’. The issue in contention was on Cost Insurance and Freight (CIF), given from PAAR headquarters. The Committee guided the Company accordingly, particularly with regard to the fact that the job had not been captured. They were told to go through their bank for regularisation of their documents.”
His words, “The point is, we are opened 24 hours for people to come up with any issue they think should be given a second look by the authority.
“We therefore want to disabuse the minds of stakeholders on negative impressions being paddled around by some persons who obviously may not be well acquainted with our Modus-operandi.
“It is instructive to note that the Command is very conscious of some of the declarations and International Conventions entered into by government, especially Arusha declaration and Kyoto Convention, dealing essentially on harmonisation of processes and procedures of International trade.
“Therefore, the Customs on their own cannot achieve their statutory mandates without collaboration with stakeholders, particularly the media, with the responsibility to educate the trading public on the fiscal policies for their compliance.
“However, if in event that the stakeholders feel maligned for any reason, must not hesitate to bring it to the CAC for necessary action”.