By Kenneth Jukpor
The new Area Controller at the Apapa Command of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), Comptroller Mohammed Abba-Kura has promised to grow the compliance level of port stakeholders to Customs processes and procedures at the Command.
Compt. Abba-Kura gave this assurance during the hand-over ceremony yesterday, as he took over from Abubakar Bashir who has been promoted to Acting Assistant Comptroller-General (ACG).
The new Area Controller who was the Controller Post Clearance Audit (PCA), also assured stakeholders in the industry of revamping the monthly stakeholdes’ meeting which had been jettisoned, noting that the Command would continue to put in place measures that will enhance revenue drive and trade facilitation.
Meanwhile, the outgoing Controller, now acting Assistant Comptroller-General (ACG) Abubakar Bashir admonished the officers of the Command as well as the media to give the new Area Controller their support in a bid to take the Command to new heights.
Abubakar also had kind words for CAC Abba-Kura, describing the new Controller as a refined Customs officer who was set to make giant strides in the service.
He noted that in enforcing compliance, the Command between January1st to March 14th, 2019 seized twenty-four (24) containers of Tomato Paste and Vegetable Oil with a duty Paid Value (DPV) of two hundred million, eight hundred and sixty-seven thousand, one hundred and twenty-four Naira (N200, 867, 124.00).
The acting ACG added that the Export Seat in the command had also built an increased level of compliance in documentation saying that within the period under review, the seat recorded exports with Free On Board (FOB) value of seven hundred and sixty-five million, three hundred thousand and seven hundred Naira (N765, 300, 700.00).
Recall that in 2018, the Apapa Customs recorded massive seizures as officers distinguished themselves with unparalleled integrity and patriotism.
ACG Bashir bagged commendation from the Customs helmsman, Comptroller-General of Customs, Col. Hammed Ali and other port stakeholders, as officers under his leadership displayed high degree of national interest, rejecting mouth-watering bribe of N150 million in dollars for the first time in the history of NCS as 40 containers of Tramadol worth N7.3billion were seized in Apapa.
In another news making seizure, two helicopters which were declared as cashewnuts were seized by Apapa Customs under Bashir’s watch.
This success Bashir attributes to the vigilance and intelligence gathering within the system, as well as information from the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC), which is a strong ally of the Customs.
As a result of these achievements, ACG Bashir has been honoured as an Outstanding Customs Area Controller in 2018, from Ebonyjess Communications, producers of Maritime Business News Updates and Analysis.