The  Nigeria Customs Service, NCS, and other maritime stakeholders led by Mr Lucky Amiwero, President of the National Council of Managing Directors of  Licensed Customs Agents, NCMDLCA,  have moved the concession of the single window cargo clearance project.

The single window systems Technology refers to facility that allow for all parties involved in trade and transport to lodge standardized information and document with a single entry point to fulfill all import, export, and transit- related regulatory requirements..

Besides the vehement opposition against the project, the House of Representative ad-hoc Committee probing the concession agreement between the Federal Ministry of Finance and Single Window systems Technology limited has indicted the former Comptroller-General of Customs Alhaji Hassan Bello Ahmed for his role of the fraudulent agreement.

Chairman of the Committee Sir Leo Ogor said that the concession agreement was not only misguided but smacks of fraud.

At the public hearing of the agreement, both the Nigeria Customs Service and Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission, ICRC, said that they were not aware of the said agreement  involving the single window system.

The Customs Service said that it only got to know of the deal after it received a letter from the Ministry of Finance intimating them of the agreement.

In his presentation, ICRC’s  Executive Director in charge of Public Private Partnership, PPP, Chidi Izuwah said that the project did not follow due process or laid down procedure.

In his submission, Amiwero  raised the issue of the absence of a  legal instrument that allow for the collection of fees payable by importers for the single window project.

“The entire agreement is fraudulent and a ploy to to make the Customs Service redundant and this is unacceptable to us” he stated.

According to Amiwero, the single window concept was developed to facilitate the processes and procedures of international trade as simple and efficient as possible for trader, concerned public authorities and government.

Amiwero who is also a member of the Task Force on the reforms of the Customs Service said that the group has recommended that Webb Fontaine (providers of the computer system that power operations of the  Customs) be made to expedite action in the installation of the Single window facility in the country.

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