The Comptroller-General, Nigeria Customs Service, Col. Hammed Ali (retired) on Monday said that the service was yet to know how much revenue it was expecting from the e-auction that it just commenced.
Ali, who was fielding questions from reporters in Abuja during the launch of the e-auction platform for forfeited cars, noted that in the long run, the NCS will be able to state the amount so far generated from the exercise.
He stressed that it was difficult to state the amount from the flag-off since the seizure has no end.
Asked to state how much revenue the organisation was expecting from the exercise, he said that “at this stage we will be unable to tell you how much we are expecting because it all involves items from seizures from the cargo. As we get them condemned by the regular court we include them into the process. So, it is an ongoing process that we do not schedule and end to it.And for us to say this is how much we are expecting at this stage I think it will not be correct.
But we know the number of items we have and we know we are still in the process of doing the evaluation of some of them which will be included in the portal. But for us to categorically tell you this is how much we are expecting, I think at this stage is not possible but in the midstream, we will be able to tell you how much so far.
And for us to say this is how much we are expecting at this stage I think it will not be correct. But we know the number of items we have and we know we are still in the process of doing the evaluation of some of them which will be included in the portal. But for us to categorically tell you this is how much we are expecting, I think at this stage is not possible but in the midstream, we will be able to tell you how much so far.
The platform which has now replaced the manual process is to ensure effective sales of seized cars, as well as to create an avenue to generate more revenue while ensuring accountability and transparency in the process.
According to him, the auction exercise is in line with the provision of Section 167 (2) CAP C45 and section 2(1) and (2) CAP C46 of the Customs and Excise Management Act (CEMA) which gives the service the powers to dispose seized and overtime cargoes after they must have undergone judicial process.
The Controller-General in his words, “In the past, stakeholders had accused the service of Nepotism, short-changing the government of revenue through arbitrary auction fees to be paid by allottees and sundry corruption allegation against the service”. Adding that this innovation seeks to put an end to the usual bottlenecks encountered in the auction process.
The process which is a continuous one, has seized cars in the website which is open to bidders from all works of life and the highest bidder will be notified via email and thereby given the necessary directives.
Speaking on the process, the technical group disclosed that a website has been made available for interested individuals to visit. Adding that the process has been simplified for the common man to understand as it only involves three key steps.
Participants are however required to create an e-wallet on the platform, and pay in an administrative fee of one thousand naira to be granted access to bid in any available auction. Participants are expected to bid with a minimum of N10,000. At the end of each auction, the highest bidder(winner) is given five working days to pay, failure to so automatically means the second highest bidder will be declared the Winner.
He however called on the general public to do the right thing to avoid their goods being seized.