Controller, Apapa Area Command of the Nigeria Customs Service, Comptroller Charles Edike has dismissed media reports (not in SHIPS & PORTS DAILY) that a consignment of kits belonging to the Nigerian Football Federation (NFF) were seized by Customs operatives attached to his command at the Lagos Port Complex, Apapa.
Speaking with SHIPS & PORTS DAILY in his office on Thursday, Edike said he is not aware of any seizure or detention of the said consignment.
The Controller who expressed his displeasure over the report said there was no way a consignment belonging to NFF would be detained by his officers without his knowledge.
“We are angry that people as important as NFF had to go to the press that they have such consignment in Customs custody when the Area Controller is not aware, the PRO (Public Relations Manager), APM (Area Project Manager) and the DC (Deputy Comptroller) of the terminal are not aware.
“Who did they complain to in Customs? If they truly have any consignment in the port, the right thing for them to do was to contact the PRO or at best see the Area Controller and tell them their problem.
“I am annoyed for NFF to want to destroy the image of the command and the Service. We are working hard to make things easier for people and NFF is now painting us bad,” he lamented.
He urged NFF to put in its best and ensure that they come out victorious in the ongoing match and not use such allegations as excuse for poor performance.
“They should find a way of winning the match and not say Customs is the reason for them not winning the match. If they are not prepared to win, they better wake up,” he said.
A newspaper (not SHIPS & PORTS DAILY) had reported last week that the consignment was seized by the Nigeria Customs Service for undisclosed reasons.
NFF General Secretary on Thursday also denied any seizure of the football body’s consignment.
Sanusi said the consignment, which arrived at the Lagos port on Sept 4 was in the process of being cleared by the Customs.
According to him, the federation is following due process in the clearance of the jerseys and other equipment from its kitting company.
“One of the reasons for the delay in the early arrival of the consignment was due to change in the mode of transportation.
“Instead of the consignment arrival via air transportation, they were sent them by sea.
“I can assure that they are in the process of being cleared.
“I want to clarify the fact that the consignment has not been seized but are being cleared at the moment.
“We have been used to receiving the consignments by air but this time it came via shipment.
“The NFF is following due procedures to ensure the kits come out in time for our teams abroad,” Sanusi said.
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