Seme Border, South-Western Nigeria
The Federal Government of Nigeria has been advised to explore the opportunities provided by the African Growth and Opportunity Act, AGOA, to provide socio-economic activities for the border communities as a means to make smuggling unattractive to citizens in the border communities.
Assistant Comptroller-General, Nigeria Customs Service, Kathleen Ekekezie, offered the advice while receiving in her office, Lagos State Executive Council members of the Nigerian Union of Journalists, NUJ.
She said provision of infrastructure such as good roads, cottage industries to engage artisans, crafts and tradesman, primary health centres, schools among others, would complement the existing good relationship the leadership of Nigeria Customs Service, NCS, had built with border communities and their traditional rulers.
Kathleen Ekekezie, said the NCS had sustained behavioural change advocacy in border communities to educate them of the arm in smuggling to themselves, their unborn children and to the nation at large.
Earlier, the Chairman, Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Lagos State Council, Comrade Adeleye Ajayi, commended the service for exceeding the N1 trillion mark since 2017.
He lauded the service for achieving total revenue of N1.5 trillion last year, 2020 and exceeded the target of N1.38 trillion set for the command in the same year.
Ajayi also commended the customs management for the ongoing reforms in the service. He paid glowing tribute to projects such as the automation process, Nigeria Customs Integrated System (NICIS 11), software development platform, robust stakeholders’ sensitization and the commitment of officers to work.
The NUJ Chairman also lauded the service for speedy deployment of scanners at the ports and border posts.
Ajayi commended the zonal coordinator, zone A headquarters, for the effective administration of the 13 commands and units under her jurisdiction.
The NUJ Chairman said the service had done well in its triadic functions of collection of revenue on behalf of the federal government, facilitation of international and national trade and the prevention of smuggling in the myriads of ways contrabands are smuggled and customs duties evaded.
The newly elected Lagos NUJ chairman, however, solicited the assistance of the service in terms of training and retraining in order to effectively report the activities of the service and avoid misrepresentation.
Ajayi also called for the assistance of the service towards the completion of the ongoing remodelling of the secretariat of the union at Iyalla Street, Alausa, Ikeja, Lagos.
Picture: Isaac Jimoh AyodeleShare