*Seizes 145kg of Colorado Drugs, 8 Containers of Machetes
The measures put in place by the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) to attain set goals and objectives are yielding good results as it rake in not less than N135 billion in the Tin Can Island Port (TCIP), Apapa, Lagos in the first quarter of the year.
Maritime Bits insight into the revenue generated by the NCS in TCIP showed that it raked in not less than N135.443 billion in the first quarter of 2022 which is an improvement over the N22.747 billion only it generated in the first quarter of 2021.
Within the period under review, it also intercepted prohibited items. These include 145 kilograms of Colorado (Indian hemp), 206,000 pieces of machetes without End User Certificates.
Others are 640 bales of used clothes, 236,500 pieces of used shoes, 62,500 pieces of new lady’s shoes, 1,670,400 pieces of Chloroquine injections (Smg/Sml). 1,814,400 pieces Novalgen injection (500mg/Sml), 48,850 rolls of cigarettes and 23,800 tons of sodium bromate and baking powder.
While the Colorado drugs were concealed in two units of Ridgeline trucks and two units of Toyota Corolla vehicles, the machetes which were made in Ghana were concealed in eight containers.
The items which are high on the Import Prohibition List (IPL) as enunciated by the Federal Government through the Federal Ministry of Finance and enforced by the NCS has a Duty Paid Value (DPV) of N1.048 billion.
The Customs Area Controller (CAC), TCIP Command, Comptroller Adekunle Oloyede who disclosed this at the command headquarters in Apapa recently also gave reasons for the seizure of the machetes.
These include the present Nigeria’s security situation and the lack of End User Certificate from the office of National Security Adviser (NSA) for the importation of the prohibited items.
According to the CAC, the importation of these products contravenes several sections of the Customs and Excise Management Act (CEMA) Cap 45 LFN 2004. These include sections 46, 47 and 161.
In the same vein, Oloyede revealed that the total tonnage of goods exported through TCIP within the period under review is 71,014.4 metric tons with a total Free on Board (FOB) value of N56.205 billion.
On the other hand, he disclosed that within the same period in 2021, the total tonnage of goods exported through the command was 44,502.9 metric tons with a total FOB value of N31.371 billion.
His words: “Comparatively, between January to March 2021 and 2022, the tonnage of goods exported through the command increased from 44,502.9 metric tons to 71,014 representing an increase of 62.67 per cent. The FOB value in Naira of the above mentioned tonnage also increased from N31.371 billion to N56.205 billion representing an increase of 55.82 per cent within the period under review.”
The CAC also revealed that commodities exported through the Command includes the following, copper ingots, stainless steel ingots, sesame seeds, cashew nuts, cocoa beans, rubber, cocoa butter, leather, ginger, and frozen shrimps.
He however expressed regret that despite the successes recorded by the command, the NCS was still grappling with challenges in the area of treatment of overtime cargo because of the non-implementation of the extant laws guiding cargo yet to be cleared by the consignees.
He also noted that the absence of government warehouses at close proximity to the port has led to difficulties in logistics and handling cost over the years.
The CAC stated that the operations of TCIP in the period under review significantly aligned with the statutory responsibilities of NCS in revenue generation, trade facilitation, as well as enforcement and anti-smuggling activities
Giving an insight into the mandate of NCS as it relates to his command, Oloyede said: “In addition to the above, my mandate also included putting modalities in place to boost export and increase revenue through the use of risk management mechanisms in identifying areas of leakages with a view to blocking them. It is also instructive to note that the command’s operations drew inspiration from the theme of the International Customs Day, scaling up Customs digital transformation by embracing a data culture and building a data ecosystem.
“The command continues to leverage on this theme to harness such facilities that have been made available on the NICIS II platform such as the Pre-Arrival Assessment Report (PAAR), advance manifest, selectivity engine and data analysis which to a large extent enhanced our risk management processes culminating into trade facilitation, expedited customs processes and ensuring the collection of appropriate duties and taxes”.