BY Victoria Ojeme
The Registrar General, Corporate Affairs Commission Garba Abubakar has said that company registration certificates will henceforth be sent to customers through courier services or electronically to avoid physical contact with clients.
Abubakar made this known while reacting to issues that led to a protest by some aggrieved customers at the corporate headquarters of the commission in Abuja.
He said since the lockdown as a result of the covid-19 pandemic was eased off by the Federal Government, the premises of the commission has always been overwhelmed with clients which forced the management to take a drastic decision in compliance with the covid-19 protocols to stop the spread of the pandemic.
” We are responsible institution. We have to abide by government directives. We cannot continue with this crowd in this place and something has to give way.
What we have done is to insist that mailing not have any physical contact with customers any longer.
From tomorrow all new certificate will be sent through courier companies and the customers will bear the cost because they are paying for transport or buying fuel to drive themselves to this place, they can as well pay the cost of delivery.
From 10th August every other process will be done by mailing” he said.
The Registrar General who noted that only skeletal service is being carried out said the Commission will no longer allow outsiders to have access to sensitive documents as practiced in the past but operate based on accepted global standard practices.
“We have been forced to revisit the existing system of dealing with our customers because since the ease of lockdown we have been allowing customers to come to the commission to do their transactions but the crowd is becoming uncontrollable and it appears to negating the Covid-19 protocol issued by the Federal Government on social distancing and maximum number of persons that should be at a place at a time.
It was because of this concerns and the fact that bases on the protocol, we are not supposed to work with the full complement of our staff. The government guidelines says only officers on level 14 and above should be coming to the office and they work from 8am to 2pm.
For organisation like ours that registers companies, maintains record of companies and also issue information to members of the public, it has been quite challenging because in the past e have service timeline where most of this services are delivered within 24 hours.
With this restriction on the number of personnel and the working hours, it is impossible to meet those time lines. So we are forced to suspend those service timelines and we made that known to the customers.
It is normal the expectation is s high. Some of us pretend as if we are not in a pandemic, we are expected to deliver as if the situation is normal. We try to impress on the customers to understand that this are unusual times and in as much as we want efficient services it is not possible under the present circumstance.
What we do now is we have to suspend physical contact for some transaction like searches. We made it a policy that all search report will now be issued by the commission, our officers will conduct the searches” he said.