Thursday, 8 June 2017

Customs chief promises adequate cargo scanners at ports

Customs chief promises adequate cargo scanners at ports
The Comptroller-General of Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), Col. Hameed Ali, retired has assured stakeholders of adequate scanners at the ports as part of Federal Government’s effort to ensure conducive business environment.
Ali gave the assurance on Wednesday in Lagos at a stakeholders’ forum organised by the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) on the implementation of the Executive Orders issued by the Acting President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo.
“We realised that fast-tracking the Executive Orders required functional scanners which would subject all containers to examination.
“Inadequate scanners will not facilitate trade but in a couple of months, adequate scanners will be available in various ports in the country,” Ali said.
According to him, the service will engage in shift-duties for officers to work 24-hours to achieve the executive order and to also facilitate trade.

Also speaking, the Assistant Inspector General of Police, Mr Pius Imue, expressed commitment of the police toward providing adequate security for both cargoes and human beings within and outside the ports.
“Both the Port Police and the Maritime Police Commands in the West and Eastern ports will synergise and ensure maximum security is provided for cargoes.
“All the arms of Police have been informed about the Executive Orders and that is why there is the need for the Police to secure the movements of people and cargoes,’’ Imue said.
The News Agency of Nigerian (NAN), reports that the directive on implementation of the Executive Orders was issued on May 18 by the acting president.
In his remarks, the Managing Director of NPA, Ms Hadiza Usman, said that the Nigeria Police Force had been given a clear directive not to allow any unauthorised person to enter the port.
Speaking on the six Executive Orders, Usman said “there shall be no touting, official or unofficial persons at any ports in Nigeria and staff should be properly identified with uniform and official cards.
“Any officer caught soliciting or receiving bribes from port users shall be subjected to immediate removal and disciplinary and criminal proceedings, in line with the extant laws and regulations.
“All agencies presently in Nigerian ports shall within 60 days harmonise their operations into one Single Window Joint Task Force at all times.
“The new single interface station at each port shall capture, track and record information on all goods arriving and departing Nigeria and remit the captured information to the head of Ministry, Departments and Agencies (MDAs), as well as the head of the National Bureau of Statistics on weekly basis.
“Each port in Nigeria shall assign an existing export terminal to be dedicated to the exportation of agricultural produce within 30 days of issuance of this order,’’ Usman said.
According to her, the order has directed that the Apapa port resumes 24-hour operations within 30-days of the issuance of the order.
She stated that each stakeholder had commenced implementation of the Executive Orders, and urged them to put the nation’s interest above their own to enable the orders work.
Usman said that there was also the need for all government agencies assigned to operate at the ports to harmonise in order to ensure the successful implementation of the Executive Orders.

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