Area Controller, Apapa Area Command of the Nigeria Customs Service, Comptroller Charles Edike has said that even with the drop in volume of imported cargo usually experienced in the first quarter of the year, he does not need to be cajoled by anyone to send containers to offdock terminals.
Reacting to complaints from the Lilypond Area Command that very few containers were being stemmed to the facility, Edike told SHIPS & PORTS DAILY that the idea of transferring containers to less busy terminals including Lilypond was his initiative, hence there was no need pleading or soliciting that containers be stemmed to the command.
He said when the command was inactive due to non-transfer of containers; he initiated the policy, which though reduced revenue collected by the Apapa Command, to facilitate trade and to ensure that no consignment suffered undue delay.
Edike said provided that the agent does not have any ulterior motive for wanting to transfer his containers to an offdock facility; he would approve any application for such forwarded to him through the Lilypond Area Controller.
He said while declaration at the command had dropped significantly from 200 per day, a total of 55,002 containers were sent out of the Lagos Port Complex, Apapa to less busy terminals out of which 18,518 were sent to Lilypond in 2014.
Edike said, “If they (agents) apply, then I will approve. Once the agents apply through the Area Controller there, he will forward the application to me then I will approve. But if the agents do not apply what would I approve?”
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