Ajimobi seeks Customs/community partnership to curb smuggling

Oyo State Governor, Abiola Ajimobi, has advocated the creation of “Customs-Community Relations Groups” that would be saddled with the responsibility of providing up to date information on border activities for the Nigerian Customs service if the fight against smuggling and smugglers would be successful in Nigeria.

Ajimobi who made this call yesterday during a courtesy visit paid to him by the Comptroller-General of the Nigeria Customs Service, Hameed Ali, noted that the NCS should have a robust relationship with all strata of the society to the level that people would be willing to volunteer necessary information that would help them succeed in their statutory obligations to the nation.

“I am suggesting that Customs Service should have community relations groups that can be giving information on border activities. I believe that Customs should have relationship with all strata of the society so that more information can be given to you,” the Governor said.

Describing the NCS boss who was a former Military Administrator of Kaduna State as “a man of impeccable character,” he pledged the support of his administration to the service.

Speaking, Ali said that he was on a tour of the Oyo/Osun Area Command covering Oyo and Osun states to intimate his men to work harder in meeting the revenue target given to the Customs.

He appealed to the state governments to implement laws on smuggling in the country.

He also called on companies and industries across the nation to pay their excise duties as at when due in order to generate more revenue to government coffers.

He pledged his readiness to partner with the industries in order to generate more revenue for the government.

Explaining that the need to create alternative sources of revenue which was necessitated by the drop in prices of crude oil globally and the country’s many years of overdependence on oil is putting pressure on the NCS, Ali also said the Service would partner with companies in order to achieve success.

The customs boss also visited the British American Tobacco Company in Ibadan where he charged the company to be committed to revenue generation for the government, adding, “I have came here to ginger you up to your responsibility in revenue generation. What we are doing is to visit our industries and trading partners to ensure smooth operations and drive more revenue to improve the economy.”

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