NIMASA, Customs, FIRS merger will impede ease of doing business – APFFLON warns

Otunba Frank Ogunojemite

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NIMASA, Customs, FIRS merger will impede ease of doing business – APFFLON warns

Otunba Frank Ogunojemite

The Africa Association of Professional Freight Forwarders and Logistics of Nigeria (APFFLON), has advised the Federal Government to carry out comprehensive scrutiny of every proposal before its implementation, in order to avoid further administrative catastrophy

The advice came while reacting to the proposal by President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s Policy Advisory Council suggesting that Customs, Nigeria Maritime Administration and Safety Agency and Federal Inland Revenue Service be merged into the Nigerian Revenue Service.

The Advisory Council, recently, recommended the declaration of a state of emergency on revenue generation in the country.

According to the council, the proposed merger would enable an efficient collection of all direct and indirect taxes, as well as levies on behalf of the Federal Government.

In his reaction, the National President of APFFLON, Otunba Frank Ogunojemite, said that merging the three agencies of government would encourage corruption and create unnecessary bottlenecks, when there is renewed clamour for ease of doing business across the globe.

According to Ogunojemite, “President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s administration must not fail to assemble experts to x-ray every economic policy, to know how best it would benefit the country before its implementation. He must not sacrifice good governance on the alter of nepotism.

” We need round pegs in round holes, if at all we sincerely need to progress as a nation. I believe that the council meant well; but the merger will not yield positive results”.

“The policy will impede ease of doing business as process requirements could become cumbersome.
The policy can as well negatively affect the African Continental Free Trade Agreement- AFCFTA and even jeopardize the Single Window policy of Nigeria Customs.”

According to submissions made by the National Economy Sub-Committee, the policy will be aided by the passage of an Emergency Economic Reform Bill,  which will grant the President special powers to drive the economic reform agenda and support the delivery of sustainable and inclusive economic growth.

On the whole, Ogunojemite advised the committee to seek stakeholders’ inputs and not forget the 2019 International Monetary Fund- IMF report on the economy and Nigerian Ports Reforms.

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