Customs urges importers, agents to make honest declarations

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Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) on Monday urged importers and clearing agents to be honest in their declarations in 2013.

Mr. Chris Osunkwo, Public Relations Officer of the Tin-Can Island Command of NCS, made the appeal in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos. Osunkwo said such honest declarations would go a long way to assist officers of the command during destination inspection.

He also urged terminal operators to bar unauthorised persons from going into the ports. “We are pleading with the importers and agents. Let them imbibe the culture of honest declaration so that all of us will enjoy this. It will be a smooth run.

“Make honest declarations and Customs will not have any issue with you. It’s only when you see a calculator you call it a stapler, you see a phone you call it a perforator, that’s where trouble comes. So if they can imbibe that, we won’t have any issues,” he said.

Osunkwo said that officers were also facing challenges of inadequate offices at the terminals. “The challenges include inadequate office space as provided by the terminal operators. If you go to the terminals, you will see officers packed like sardines and yet sweating.

“Although we are used to inadequate power supply, but then at least when the power is there we should have comfortable offices. The concessionaires are trying but what we are saying is that they should do more. We expect more because as the cargo throughput increases, definitely we’ll need more officers, more hands,” Osunkwo said.

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