By Sylvanus Ekpo
The Nigeria Customs Service, Seme Command, generated a total of N5.3 billion between January and October, 2017 in spite of the downturn in the economy through the Lagos Abidjan Corridor. Also, 23 persons are undergoing trial for various offenses.
Making the claims recently, the Comptroller of the command, Mohammed Aliyu, said the command used the collaborative anti-smuggling approach with other security agencies to dislodge and ground the activities of economic saboteurs. In turn, the command witnessed the decline in smuggling in the Seme border axis while there was a corresponding increase in revenue generation.
He stated that the anti-smuggling unit made a total of 469 seizures with a Duty Paid Value (DPV) of N508, 469, 776.00 for the period under review. In the month of October, the command generated N678, 237, 118.00 while 123 seizures were made with a DPV of 184, 366, 505.00. The seizures include used vehicles, rice, second hand clothing, shoes, frozen products, mosquito repellant coils, expired fertilizer and used tyres.
On the Ecowas Trade Liberalisation Scheme (ETLS), adopted to promote regional trade and integration, Compt. Aliyu said no goods meant to pay import duty is allowed to pass through the scheme since the rules of origin and enterprise list are strictly followed to ensure there are no infractions through false declarations. He maintained that the command has helped to facilitate legitimate trade by moving ECOWAS goods across the corridor to the CIF value of 11, 192, 249, 590.
Under the Comprehensive Import Supervision Scheme, CISS, the command netted the sum of 111, 694, 121.00 with a revenue loss of 3, 141, 661, 339.47. On export, it facilitated the export of Made-in-Nigeria goods with FOB value of 9, 919, 324, 238 meticulously ensuring that none of the export prohibition is allowed to pass to another country in line with extant rules.
On the use of scanners for cargo inspection, the Comptroller said it had helped to dissuade sponsored petitioners who often allege that smuggled weapons are brought into the country through the land borders. He maintained that during the scanning process, any suspected images are immediately subjected to 100% inspection. Comptroller Aliyu thanked the CGC, Col. Hameed Ali (rtd), the officers and men of the command and other security agencies working in concert with the command to curb cross border crimes.