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2024 ICD: Stakeholders’ Applaud Customs Leadership Direction, Efficient Administration


HE Oyetola CON reading his address

The celebration of the International Customs Day (ICD) 2024 in Lagos led by the Comptroller General of the Nigeria Customs Service, Bashir Adewale Adeniyi MFR, drew commendations from a wide range of stakeholders, who lauded the leadership capacity of Adeniyi and his management for expanding the efficient frontiers of customs trade and for taking the customs service to enviable heights, since his assumption of office.

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From the Minister of Marine and Blue Economy, Mr Adegboyega Oyetola CON to his counterpart at the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment, Dr. Doris Uzoka-Anite, through captains of industry and stakeholders, assurances of high esteem poured in for the Comptroller General of Customs (CGC)  for strategically reinventing the service’ performance curve.

The stakeholders listed in the achievement kitty, significant innovations they say have improved trade facilitation, cargo clearance procedures,  partnership and engagements, even as they individually sought for additional windows of understanding to make it better.


Speaking as the Chief Guest of Honour, Oyetola praised the CGC and the NCS for carrying stakeholders along in its important economic assignment, while assuring that his ministry and agencies under it will continue to partner with the customs service.

He further assured Nigerians of his ministry’s unwavering commitment to collaborative engagements with stakeholders in the international trade community.

Importantly, the Blue Economy Minister enjoined stakeholders and the customs service to continue to explore greater engagement with the hope of fostering greater understanding and securing even greater growth projections and possibilities.

“In this era of increased interdependence, customs and its stakeholders must work hand in hand to ensure the overall success of initiatives that will help unlock the immense potential of collaboration and increase revenue generation.

“At this juncture, let me commend the leadership of customs for agreeing to abandon the physical examination of cargoes at our ports and priotising the use of scanners”, adding:

DG NIMASA Jamoh speaking during the event

“This development will not only increase revenue, it will ensure ports efficiency and competitiveness. And it will reduce drastically the cargo turnaround time.”

Also speaking at the event, the oft dramatic Director General of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), Dr Bashir Jamoh OFR, electrified the hall with his humorous jabs after which he thumbed up the CGC and his management, noting that “we also hear about the wonderful things you have been doing at the customs since you came onboard.”

Jamoh however urged the leadership of customs to prioritize the engagement of critical stakeholders as doing so will produce far reaching understanding of policies and processes.

ES NSC Akutah addressing the gathering

“This is the first time l am attending the world customs day celebration by the Nigeria customs, they do it but they don’t reach out to some of the agencies. Like the NPA and Nigerian Shippers’ Council, we are partners in progress; this is the first time NIMASA is attending and l want to thank the CGC most sincerely for extending your invite to us. I congratulate you for this day and wish to mention that despite the hardship, we have continued to see improvement especially in the area of revenue generation. Nigeria customs have continued to excel in terms of understanding the legitimacy of the goods that are supposed to come into this country.

Nwokeoji, ANLCA President giving his goodwill message

“ln the clip we watched, there was report of 30 officers of the customs killed in the cause of their official duty, especially at the land borders. While we are sleeping and enjoying ourselves, customs officers are busy at the border manning and monitoring, and sometimes sacrificing and losing their lives. So, l am happy that we are here, there is no how we can make progress as a nation if we don’t cooperate and collaborate. l want to congratulate you the CG Customs for this innovation, and for your loyalty to the country.”

On his part, Managing Director of the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), Mohammed Bello-Koko noted that the authority has started recording gains from its improved collaboration with the customs service, including increased ports community system emplacement championed by NPA and the reduction in lost cargo dwell time.

He said, “This collaboration also gives life to their commitment to the deployment of the Port Community System (PCS) which the NPA has propelled to the final phase of consultancy under the technical guidance of the International Maritime Organisation (IMO).

“The PCS is germane to promoting efficiency and making our ports competitive as it lays the groundwork for the National Single Window. Our commitment to positioning the Lekki Deep Seaport as transhippment hub to service the maritime needs of our landlocked neighbours will also benefit greatly from this collaboration.

“This alignment of vision between NPA and Nigeria Customs Service portends great fortune for trade facilitation and national prosperity, and maximising the opportunities inherent in our littoral assets as a maritime nation rests heavily on this collaboration,” he said.

While also giving his goodwill message, the Executive Secretary/CEO, Nigerian Shippers Council, Barr. Pius Ukeyima Akutah  promised to continue to collaborate with the Nigeria Customs, stressing that the success of the council as the port economic regulator rests principally on such synergy.

President of the Nigerian Guild of Editors, Mr. Eze Anaba also making a remark eulogized the leadership of the NCS, noting that his confidence in the media to help build a virile nation has been unparallel.

“Let me start with the chief host, Mr. Adewale Adeniyi, , since he came onboard as the CG of customs, he has proved that the media cannot be your enemy, he has proved that working with the media can lead to cooperation and efficiency. I want to highlight two facts l get from my colleagues who are on the field, and so far, none has been contradicted. One is that revenue target has been meticulously pursued and in some cases, exceeded…it’s a fact, at least in this day of social media activism and all sorts, nobody has said customs lied.

“I have also been told that the welfare of officers and men of the customs service has also improved. I have been told that operational efficiency has improved… competent men have been deployed to man important tasks, that is why we’ve been seen more arrest, more interception and more appearance on news channels announcing seizures and all that; courtesy of the CG Customs. I can only wish him well and if he continues with his agenda of collaboration, l am sure that our economy will improve and the customs service will continue to achieve more successes.”

Also speaking, Mr. Emenike Nwokeoji, the President of the Association of Nigerian Licensed Customs Agents (ANLCA) congratulated the CGC for bringing innovation into the cargo clearance industry, noting that it is a significant push in achieving the growth of national economy.

“As we celebrate the International Customs Day for this year 2024, the Theme for the year is apt, collaboration with a purpose. The purpose is for trade facilitation which we need now more than ever. The purpose is for synergy between government and the agencies that work with them.

“We need access in order for us to collaborate effectively, it should not only be about revenue generation, the economy needs a whole lot of re-engineering at this time. I join other stakeholders to say specially that the CGC have done very well and should keep up the good job”, he said.

Earlier, the Comptroller General of Customs  remarked that the theme for the 2024 ICD celebration aligned with its core objectives and three-point agenda namely consolidation, innovation and collaboration; adding that it has been the NCS’s guiding principles over the last seven months of his administration.

This is even as he said that the Declaration Documents reached at the recent Comptroller General of Customs conference in December 2023, after an exhaustive consultation with stakeholders, is presently undergoing implementations.

According to the CGC, the implementation of the documents is designed to address multiple alerts, reduction of customs checkpoints and improvement in officers’ conduct.

He said customs would continue to support initiatives and strengthen relationship with stakeholders towards improving efficiency at the port.

“As customs do their part, we call on all stakeholders to reflect on the documents and do their part, as customs commitment to implementing these resolutions remains very firm.




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