Tin Can Chapter ANLCA eulogies Adeniyi’s Customs administration

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Comptroller-General of Customs, Wale Adeniyi

By DAPO OLAWUNI

In unison and one accord, the customs brokers plying their trade at the Tin Can Island port have expressed satisfaction with the present Customs administration led by its Comptroller General, Adewale Adeniyi.

Their endorsement stems from their belief that the incumbent customs authority is a radical departure from the pains and torture they experienced for eight years under the previous leadership.

Speaking in their different capacity as the members of Tin can Island chapter of the Association of Nigerian Licensed Customs Agents (ANLCA), the freight forwarders said the one -year old administration of Adeniyi as the Customs boss has heralded peace and stability at the customs port, led to trade facilitation, boosted revenue collection and bolstering staff welfare.

“,It was a refreshing departure from the past administration when customs brokers were always at loggerhead with Customs administration over its anti-trade, anti- people policies and programmes which created tension and put a lot of stress on freight forwarders” declared Barrister Ada Akpunonu, one of the foremost freight forwarders and the Managing Director of Prozac
International Nigeria Limited.

Speaking in the same vein were Sunday Oforha, the ANLCA sole Administrator at Tin Can port and the Managing Director of Viana Rite Logistics , Alhaji Usman Baba, the Managing Director of Lungwu Nigeria Limited, Charles Uba, the Managing Director of Pilyke Global Services Nigeria Limited as well as special Assistant to ANLCA President, Emenike, Lolo Nneka and Otunba Olasupo Komolafe, the Managing Director of Ankosstar Nigeria Limited.

“We are really happy with the performance of the present Customs management led by CGC Adewale Adeniyi.

” We are equally elated by the Customs Act 2023 which allows professionals to take charge of Customs affairs.” declared Barrister Akpunonu.

” This has impacted well on the customs operations.

“You can’t compare what obtained now in customs administration with the previous regime because trained officers are now in charge.

” Some of the challenges we experienced under the previous regime such as duplication of functions and multiplication of task forces are no longer there”

” This has really helped to facilitate trade, the ANLCA Chieftains said.

The excited freight forwarders claimed that clearance of goods now takes between 24 and 48 hours, if importers are compliant.

” Today, there are no longer multiplicity of task force teams who would subject our consignments to multiple checks, thus impeding trade facilitation and extortions of agents.

“The morale of staff is boosted due to the enhanced welfare programmes of the customs administration which are meant to motivate them.

” This has led to efficient service delivery and atmosphere of peace at the ports, less tension for compliant freight forwarders and enhanced revenue generation.

” The level of compliance is also high amongst the trading public”

” All these are as a result of the innovative leadership of the Nigeria Customs service” the freight forwarders declared.

The freight forwarders of the Tin Can ANLCA stock however lamented in the floating exchange rate which they claimed hampers trade and scares investors from the country.

” The issue of floating exchange rate is a worrisome issue which impedes trade” Akponuno declared.

” The Ministry of Finance and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) should as a matter of urgency intervene to bring sanity to the system and restore the sagging confidence of investors.

” The situation is very unpredictable due to instability of the exchange rate which does not tend to planning” the ANLCA Chieftain said.

” In the last three to four months, there has been fluctuations in exchange rates.

” Importers are afraid. They cannot plan because most of them took loans from the banks with high interests” lamented Sunday Eforha, the ANLCA Tin can chapter sole Administrator.

He claimed that this situation has given rise to paucity of cargo at the port .

“Cargo throughput has dropped. Tin Can port now look like a graveyard” the ANLCA chieftain claimed.

The respondents however agreed that the unfortunate situation was not the fault of the customs as they are merely implementors of government fiscal policies.

” As again the erroneous impression in some quarters, the floating rate was the fiscal policy of the CBN and not the making of the customs.

“The Customs are just implementing the policy” Ada Akpunonu explained.

She however expressed surprise that the Manufacturers are doing little or nothing to address the situation.

” It is only ANLCA, under the current leadership of Emenike, which is working silently to tackle the problems.

“The ANLCA leadership has engaged the necessary authority on this matter and it is still in the process of engagement” the freight forwarder claimed.

However, the ANLCA team has debunked the widely held views in some quarters which claimed that the present Customs management was favouring some associations, terminal operators, groups and individuals through benchmarking in duty collection.

” There is nothing like benchmarking.

” You pay duties according to your declaration. So the issue of favoritism in duty collection as being alleged against the Customs management, especially DCG Carolina Niagwan, the DCG, Trade and Tariffs, is false and unfounded.

“Duty application is triggered by the system and not on the whims and caprices of an individual” declared Barrister Akpunonu.

” Duty payment is not uniform.
There is no way she can influence duty payment as she cannot doctor PAAR, even though the Comptroller of PAAR reports to her” Alhaji Usman Baba corroborated.

” It was a campaign of calumny launched by a faceless group which are not comfortable with the thoroughness and uncompromising attitude of DCG Caro which is meant to frustrate the good work she is doing in trade facilitation” Barrister Akpunonu observed.

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