Kwankwaso as President of Nigeria will grant Customs partial autonomy – Says NNPP National Chairman
…Calls for establishment of Customs Service Commission
The National Chairman of New Nigerian Peoples Party (NNPP), Dr Boniface Aniebonam, has declared that the presidential candidate of NNPP, Senator Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso, will grant partial autonomy for Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), once he assumes office as the next President of Nigeria.
He explained that such autonomy
will enable the Service to take important decisions as embedded in the laws.
Dr Aniebonam, popularly called the Freight Forwarder General of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, made these assertions during a press conference in Lagos, yesterday.
He said that Customs currently under the Finance ministry is not adding expected values in terms of trade facilitation, because of revenue targets imposed on Customs officers. As such, the Service needs partial autonomy to enhance professionalism in its operations.
According to him, “Senator Kwankwaso is a skilled and competent administrator, who understands the workings of the economy. As such, he will also ensure establishment of Customs Service Commission.
“Never again shall goods imported or exported from Nigeria be seized, if such items are not banned or fake products. Customs duty and inherent penalty as surcharge shall prevail.
“The trade policy of 41 items barred from forex by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) shall be reversed. This is because this policy is clashing with the Customs laws as contained in Sections 27, 28 and 29 of Customs and Excise Management Act (CEMA).
“In reality, Customs is about trade facilitation, not only revenue collection. Trade, when adequately enhanced, will bring about job creation, economic growth and even increase in revenue generation for government.”
Speaking further, Dr Aniebonam highlighted some of the things Senator Kwankwaso will do as the in-coming President of Nigeria to include; appointment of Comptroller General of Customs from among Customs career officers. Opening of the borders for cross border trade and transportation. Removal of Council for the Regulation of Freight Forwarding (CRFFN) from the clutches of transportation ministry to be partially autonomous in line with the Act.
“Moving CRFFN from the supervisory role of Transport Ministry to Ministry of Trade and Industry, to enhance revenue collection and professionalism, such that freight forwarding service under CRFFN regulation and control will go strictly professional. ”
He mentioned that Kwankwaso’s Presidency will expunge the licensing regulation and control of freight forwarding practitioners from Customs law pending at the Natonal Assembly. This, he said, will pave the way to review Customs laws pending at the National assembly and ensure that the laws are in tune with global best practice and standards in relation to international trade facilitation.
He emphasised : “There will be need to look at the inherent law of waiver clause as contained in the carbotage law to be reviewed and make to enhance local content in its
“He will ensure establishment of commercial shipping and partnership with private operators: the National Maritime Authority must ensure that Nigeria fly flags to mitigate the colossal loss of revenue
inherent in freight rates”.