Customs collects N3 trillion in 44 months

The Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) has been able to collect total revenue of N3,048,314,862,310.03 between January 2011 and August 2014.

Spokesperson of the NCS, Deputy Comptroller Wale Adeniyi, who gave the figure at the I-Nigerian Initiative briefing of the Forum of Spokespersons of Security and Response Agencies (FOSSRA) in Abuja, said within the first eight months of 2014 alone, over 3,961 seizures were made with majority of them consisting of rice, textile materials, poultry, wine and alcoholic beverages and vehicles.

Adeniyi said in 2011, the service collected N741.8 billion, and in 2012, it was N850.8 billion. In 2013, the NCS collected N622.2 billion and by the end of August 2014, the service had raked in N622.2 billion.

He noted that in order to improve efficiency, the NCS has concluded the training of 3,000 of its men with their counterparts from the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) and Nigeria Police while the service donated patrol vehicles for a joint patrol with the two other agencies.

According to him, relevant agencies of government are now working together and linking their e-platforms for smooth clearance of goods being imported into the country.

He explained that since the service took over the management of the destination inspection scheme in December last year, an average of 22,500 clearances had been issued per month as against the combined figure of 15,000 achieved under the three former destination inspection service providers.

“Unfortunately, progress was slowed down because a lot of machines and equipment inherited from the agents were broken down while some others were not even installed at all during the seven-year contract period.

“When we took over the Destination Inspection services in December 2013, one of the things we told government was that we needed an independent audit to let us establish the state of the health of these machines, not just scanners but everything that was done by the Destination Inspection service providers because the project was on build, own, use and transfer basis.

“They were to build all the infrastructure that were needed over the period of seven years, maintain it, train customs officers on how to operate and use these equipment and then transfer it at the expiration of the contract. And so, scanners are just one infinitesimal part of the process,” he stated.