When in October, 2015 Col. Hammed Ali(rtd) visited stakeholders in Apapa as the Comptroller General of Customs(CGC), he promised an open-door policy. The Acting CGC, Adewale Adeniyi on visit to Lagos this month, July 2023, where he met with different groups of stakeholders,he also promised open-door policy. But it seems there are differents shades of open-door policy. Read the two promises and make your conclusions.
The Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) has declared its willingness to work with stakeholders to make progress by having an understanding that in the course of doing business, strict adherence to the rule is key.
The Controller General of Customs Col. Hameed Ali Rtd., made this known during his familiarisation tour of the formation under his leadership, today at Apapa, Lagos.
While addressing stakeholders, Ali said, “my mandate which I have made clear to the Customs is reforms, restructure and increased revenue generation. In the area of revenue, some of you cut corners in the course of doing business and it is our duty to ensure that corners are not cut.”
The CG who expressed concern at the limitations currently experience by stakeholders said, “My door is open to all of you and I am ready to listen to your complaints but you must be ready to substantiate the complaints because we must work together with a clear understanding of the role that each of us has to play.”
He assured that his interest is not to make things difficult but the reverse, however, stressing that a five year jail term without the option of fine awaits anyone found wanting of corruption charges.”.
Acting Comptroller General of the Nigeria Customs Service, Wale Adeniyi on Sunday, 16th July 2023 at the Radisson Blu Hotel, Lagos met with senior maritime journalists in Lagos, even as he assured them of running an open door policy, while seeking the support of the media in his new assignment.
Adeniyi was in the company of Deputy Comptroller General of Customs Hamza Gummi in charge of Tariff and Trade, DCG Mohammed Abba-Kura in charge of Enforcement, Investigation & Inspection, DCG Jack Ajoku, in charge of Excise, Free Trade Zone & Industrial Incentives, ACG Festus Okun, Zonal Coordinator, Zone ‘A’, among others.
The meeting was also attended by Public Relations Officers of customs under the Zone ‘A’, as well as some Area Controllers.
Adeniyi a former National Public Relations Officer of customs rose through the ranks up to Deputy Comptroller General of Customs, and he was recently appointed by President Bola Tinubu into the exalted office of the CG.
The Customs CG is the most popular Public Relations Officer among maritime journalists as a result of his friendly postures.
While addressing the Journalists, Adeniyi challenged them to see his administration as their own, adding that his success or failure would be a collective one.
While interacting freely with the maritime press, he said “I think it would be something of joy if I run this race well and I succeed. Let me also tell you that it would be a collective failure if I fail”
‘It is really an experience for me that we started together and God has given me the grace to come this far.
”I want to say a very big thank you to all of you. My meeting you is to come and register my presence with the Lagos press and we know what Lagos means to the Customs.
“I am here to report myself to my colleagues that your former PRO is now the Acting Comptroller General of Customs”, Adeniyi said amid thunderous applause from the elated maritime media.
”I am also here to solicit your support, your guidance, your collaboration, and your partnership in steering the affairs of the Nigeria Customs Service.
”I think it would be something of joy if I run this race well and I succeed. Let me also tell you that it would be a collective failure if I fail. The failure will not be mine alone. It has to be something we all share because I will open my doors to you. It is going to be an open-door system.
”You have the opportunity to come to me and share the direction in which you want Customs to go.
”When I am in charge, it has been like that when I was the PRO and possibly, it would even be better when I am now the Acting Comptroller-General of Customs.
“So I crave your support and I have the focus because I have learnt from so many of the previous Comptroller-General whom I have worked with very very closely and I have learnt best practices of leadership and I hope I will be putting some of these things to use.
”I want to let you know that once in a while, gentle pats here and there, don’t hesitate to call me.
”I pray that I will not disappoint you. I pray that I will be that Comptroller General you wish I will be”, the CGC concluded in a blaze of tumultuous applause.
The customs boss earlier met with Customs Area Controllers in Zone ‘A’ as well as the Guild of Editors at the Lagos Marriott hotel on Sunday, 16th July 2023.
In his speech, the President, of the Nigeria Guild of Editors, Eze Anaba congratulated the Customs Boss on his appointment and assured them of their support while also noting the importance of Communication.
“Your coming on board is a refreshing development and I am sure we will enjoy such interactions, on behalf of my colleagues. I assure you that if you continue this way, the Nigeria Customs Service will have it good in the media”, he said.
“Some people say they’re afraid of the Media but the truth is that, if there’s no communication, if there’s no interaction, there will be miscommunication”, he stressed