The Public Relations, Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), Joseph Attah, on Wednesday revealed that dealers have started rushing to indicate interest to operate the N50 million bonded vehicle terminals.
Speaking with journalists in Abuja, he said, “Yes. A lot have indicated interest and the process is ongoing.”
According to him, the Service was ready to begin issuance of the licence and that there are already positive responses from the public.
He said, “A lot of people have indicated interest and the process is ongoing. NCS is ready for the issuance of licences to people who are interested, what it takes is for interested persons to acquire a big land, fence it and have Customs section within, a workstation with connectivity and computer system that can easily connect to the Customs server.
“Such person will also be required to enter into a bank bond of N50 million. He will now apply through the Customs Area Comptroller of the command he wants to site the terminal to the Comptroller General.”
Asked to comment on the response of Customs officers to the recent upgrade of HND to level 08, he said that the announcement has restored the morale and dignity of the affected officers.
According to him, “The reaction has been positive; it has been morale lifting across the commands. By that singular decision, officers and men are saying that the Comptroller General of Customs (CGC) has written his name in gold because he has restored dignity, integrity and pride of the affected officers.
“In my own view, reducing the rank of an HND holder because he does h=not have a B.Sc was not a perfect decision. The CGC in keeping with his reform agenda has done what needed to have been done many years back. He has restored laughter and happiness and by the grace of God, we are expecting higher productivity.”
Meanwhile a former Director-General of the National Orientation Agency (NOA), Mike Omeri has commended the reforms at the Service.
He pointed out that “What we are witnessing now is an attempt to ensure that we conform to the provisions of Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) and the rules of our country and that Customs serves the best interest of Nigerians.”
He advised that importation of rice should not be banned out rightly but done in phases according to local production capacity.
He said, “Believe me, policies relating to agriculture in this country have been result-oriented. I must say that it is not just starting from this administration, it started from previous ones.
“Today, we are seeing revolutions in Anambra, Nasarawa, Kebbi with rice everywhere. So what we need to do is not an outright ban, but we should reduce the ban according to the level of production. If we are able to produce 10,000 tonnes and we are importing 20,000, let us cut off the 10,000 and bring in the other 10,000 tonnes so that we do not go hungry,” Omeri explained.
He also urged consumers to patronise local rice saying, “So let us look at the nutritional value and begin to patronise made in Nigeria rice. Let us do phased withdrawal of import of rice in this country so that our people can grow more.”
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