Mr Joseph Attah, Deputy Comptroller and Public Relations Officer of the Nigerian Customs Service( NCS), says the Service is driven by integrity and not afraid to take bold decisions.
Attah, one of the awardees of the Security and Emergency Management Awards (SAEMA) 2019, made this known to News Agency of Nigeria on the sidelines of the awards ceremony in Abuja.
He said that most decisions taken by the service were based on the best interest of Nigerians and the overriding need to maximise revenue for the economic development of the Nation.
Attah said that the award was a recognition of the trust of Nigerians on the commitment of the service to their welfare.
“It only shows that Nigerians are seeing what we are doing in customer service. Presently the service is driven by integrity and therefore it is not afraid to take bold decisions.
“Even though some of our decisions may appear to some people to be a little bit tough ones but at the same time, we believe Nigerians deserve to be properly communicated to.
“We believe in robust sensitisation, robust engagement, we know that Nigerians once they know why you do what you do, they will support you.
“And this award is a testimony to that fact,” The Nigerian Customs said.
And on the impacts of the border closure and how Nigerians are reacting to it, Attah encouraged the public to be patient as it is for a greater good.
“Well, you cannot get to a destination If you don’t want to endure the journey.
“Nigerians are desirous of an economically viable country, a secure nation.
“Therefore certain actions have to be taken, partial border closure is part of it because a secure border is a secured nation. The Nigerian Customs boss said
“You cannot open your doors to all sorts of things that can compromise your economy and security.
“Especially when you have neighbours who at will, want to engage in activities that will make effective policing of your border difficult.
“So you make decisions that will call them to order and bring the situation to perspective so that going forward we have better border security and create enabling environment for local businesses to thrive.
Similarly, Hajiya Ya’bawa Kolo, Executive Chairman State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA) Borno State, who was an outstanding recipient of 7 awards at the ceremony said the award has motivated her and has shown the role of communication in fighting insurgency.
Kolo added that peacebuilding and social cohesion cannot be achieved without strategic communication.
She also advised the public to have a more patriotic and sacrificial attitude so as to move the nation forward.
Hamza Suleiman, a reporter with Newsmen in Borno state was also one of those awarded for his exceptional effort at reporting counter-insurgency and emergency management from the war front in the North East.
Suleiman, who expressed gratitude at the honour, dedicated the award to the Agency and his colleagues who lost their lives on the job.
He, therefore, advised journalists to be more dedicated and committed to their profession.
For his part, Shittu Yunus, the organiser and Associate Editor of Emergency Digest, an online media publication, said he believes that by the awards others will be motivated to perform great feats.
According to him “We believe that by doing this, we are encouraging and motivating others to pick up and follow suit on these exemplary activities.”
NAN reports that the event is organized by Emergency Digest, a publication of Image Merchants Promotion Limited in collaboration with the Centre for Crisis Communication (CCC) and Civil Society Legislative Advocacy Centre (CISLAC).
Security and Emergency Management Awards (SAEMA) was a tightly contested award with 254 original entries that produced 18 finalists who emerged winners.