Customs officers operating at SCOA terminal, one of the terminals under the Tin-Can Island Port Command of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) have been accused of alleged highhandedness and extortion.
But for the timely intervention of the various chapter chairmen of their professional associations, the clearing agents would have staged a protest yesterday.
Speaking with SHIPS & PORTS DAILY, a clearing agent complained that, in spite of the terminal not having scanning machines, containers are being routed for scanning and the agents are allegedly being forced to part with the sum of N10, 000 and above to rout each of their consignments for physical examination.
“In Tin-Can, they have scanning machines but there is no scanning machine at SCOA, yet some truck still go to scanning, the customs authority ought to reroute it for physical examination if it fall under scanning, but if your container is rout to scanning the customs will ask you to go and reroute it and you will be ask to pay between N10, 000 and above. Operating there as an agent cost you three times money to clear a consignment at SCOA than in Tin Can,” he lamented.
The chapter chairmen had after addressing the aggrieved agents gone into a closed-door meeting with the Officer-in-Charge of the terminal in order to reach a resolution on how the agents’ complaints would be addressed.
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