Thursday, 1 March 2018

Customs boss accuses airport operators of theft at Lagos airport

The Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), Murtala Muhammed Airport, Ikeja, Command, on Thursday accused the officials of ground handling companies of aiding and abetting stealing of cargoes at the warehouses.

Jayne Shoboiki, the new Area Controller of the command, made the allegation while addressing stakeholders at the Customs office in Lagos Airport.

“Most of the officials of ground handling companies are being alleged to be conniving with the clearing agents to pilfer cargoes at the warehouses.

“I have challenged the officials of these two operators but they denied any knowledge about the allegations.

“However, when I showed them my facts, they could not deny it.

“I see no reason why there should still be pilfering cargoes at the airport because the importers had paid the necessary duties to clear their goods.

“But the agents wanted to make more money that was supposed to be for the Federal Government.

“If you need any assistance from the Customs, you can always get them but don’t steal cargoes. I will not tolerate it,” she warned.

Mrs. Shoboiki also advised them to desist from bringing in prohibited items, adding that offenders would be punished for such infractions.

“Terminal operators, always look at your import guidelines.

”In the import guidelines, we have the role of the Customs, the terminal operators, clearing agents and others. We should be able to follow these guidelines.

“I am not here to disgrace anybody but I am here for revenue collection.

“The Customs Comptroller General, Hameed Alli has come to restructure the operations and I am here to help him implement the reforms and the restructuring.

“I am not going to compromise my revenue collection and I am not going to allow any impediment on my target of collecting revenues for the Nigeria Customs Service,” she said.

The new Comptroller promised that she would operate an open door policy and was willing to listen to suggestions from all stakeholders on how to improve the services of the agency.

Responding, Ahmed Gulmah, the Head, Corporate Services, Nigerian Aviation Handling Company (NAHCO) PLC, said the operators were not aware of the allegations.

Mr. Gulmah who said that no system was absolutely perfect, said that NAHCO would cooperate with the new customs boss to checkmate illegal activities of its workers.

He said the company would collaborate with the customs officials to ensure that it increased its revenue generation.

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