Nigeria Customs’ Mode Of Operation And The Frustration Of Government Policies.

Filed under: National Issues |

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A critical view and analysis of Nigeria’s revenue profile shows that the Nigeria Custom Service is closely knitted to oil, which is the country’s main source of revenue. In fact they are in close consonance with the agency of government who are saddled with the responsibility of collecting taxes, the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS). So, it leaves to reason that aside the oil sector, the Nigeria Customs Service and the FIRS are the next in line in terms of generating income for the nation. However, it has been reported that a large chunk of the money generated by the men who mounts Nigerian borders, NCS, goes into individual pockets of the staff, leaving the government with little or nothing. In 2011, a total of 58.5% of the funds generated by the Nigerian Customs was diverted to private pockets, leaving the country with 42.5%. Similarly, in 2012 the Nigeria Customs Service only remitted 59.3% of the revenue they made from Nigerian borders and other sources, keeping a whopping 40.7% to themselves. Though there are a lot of ways to digitalized the entire process to ensure the custom don’t grow fat on the country’s wealth while the country suffer.

The border movement is one the Federal Government needs to put under serious consideration if Nigeria is to cut the excesses of the Custom Service, block the loop holes and reform their character. The conduct of the Nigeria Custom Service has been something short of acceptable standard. All the land borders where goods come into the country or leave the country are controlled by men of the Nigerian custom, Nigeria border are hardly organized nor coordinated, little wonder why the nations border is very porous. The attitude of the custom officers at the border is characterized with something not so different from what in Nigeria parlance is described as ‘agboro’. This are men who are suppose to look after both the citizens and foreigners passing through the border, you see them carrying woods and iron threatening to go gangster on travelers, collecting bribe like its going out of existence. This are men who are entrusted with protecting the boundaries of our nation and Nigerians still wonder how hostiles cross the border with such ease.

Nigerian international offices are completely useless to her citizens abroad -most have been comatose for several years and yet are receiving funding from the government. If you attempt to visit any of the offices outside the shores of this country to seek for help or information, there is always a high probability that you may not meet anyone in the office and when you eventually meet someone, he/she reacts in a very angry way towards the visitor. Nigeria diplomats, immigration and custom officers posted abroad have a great propensity to snap at citizens, actions that go against everything that customer service stands for.

The Nigeria Custom Service are aiding and abetting the importation of foreign rice into Nigeria. Three weeks ago the government said the customs are problem to the importation of rice in Nigeria. While some years back when the government impose the ban on importation of rice into the country to encourage local producers and foster the growth and development of agricultural sector. Even going as far as increasing tariff on importation. It is never a rocket science to know that such policy will never see the light of day as long as the borders where this goods pass through are mounted by corrupt custom officers. The high tariff that the government imposed on importation becomes too much for buyers and consumers, the rate of importation reduced drastically and then the activities of smugglers increased in the popular Seme border (Benin Republic). This will most certainly be the case with the automobile policy as long as custom officers charged with protecting the borders are not properly motivated. Project Management procedure should be applied in all cross border policy to dictate and avoid those who could sabotage the entire exercise otherwise, countries like Thailand, Vietnam and Asia nations will continue to feed Nigerians while milking NIGERIA dry.

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comments

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