The leadership of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) has pledged to increase the intake of indigenes of Idiroko border communities during future enlistments into the service, to ameliorate the high level unemployment in the area.
The Comptroller General of Customs, Bashir Adewale Adeniyi MFR who met with different traditional rulers and their subjects during his working tour of the Idiroko Customs Command also pledged to improve Customs Community Relations in Border Areas to facilitate the discharge of its mandates.
The CGC noted that the role of the border community is vital to help security agencies in the discharge of their duties as regards national security. The royal fathers visited included Oba John Olakunle Ojo, the Oniko of Iko Idiroko Kingdom; Oba Yisa Adeniyi Adelakun Olaniyan, the Onikpokia of Ikpokia Kingdom, as well as Oba Kehinde Adeboye Gbadewole Olugbenle, the Oba of Ilaro Kingdom.
A statement by the Customs National Public Relations Officers, CSC Aliyu Maiwada, stated that the CGC solicited the support of border communities and their leaders for the success of the service operations.
Maiwada quoted the CGC as saying:”Members of this community, like all other border communities in Nigeria, have a significant role in helping our Security Agencies in the discharge of their role as regards national security.
“Idiroko is very strategic to our operations; all borders around Idiroko represent a strategic gateway to not just trade and economic development of Nigeria but also for National security management”.
Responding to the community leaders who appreciated his visit while raising concerns about issues affecting their livelihood, especially on alleged neglect of federal presence and huge unemployment rate of their youths, urged them to channel their concerns appropriately to government, noting that the President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s administration is poised to addressing such issues.
“I will request you, as a community, to continue to support the government. “We have a new administration that has shown that it will listen to people, a new administration that has demonstrated that when policies are not working, we are ready to review it”, he noted.
“Because of that commitment, I want to charge members of this community to channel your reactions appropriately to government, and as a responsible government, I believe that they will listen to you and make amendments where necessary.”
In addition, the Customs boss also noted that recruitment policies will be revisited to ensure that more people from the border communities get slots into Nigeria Customs Service.
“One fair commitment will like to give to you is that we will do better in recruitment with people in border communities in the Nigeria Customs Service because we believe that they are stakeholders, and customs community relationship is stronger when you know that you have your sons and daughters in the Nigeria Customs Service.
“We are also not unmindful of the fact that where we have this kind of critical operations, we should also be talking about the kind of corporate social responsibility programs that we are going to be doing in places like this”, he added.
The CGC also visited the Ogun I Area Command at Idiroko, where he was received by the Area Controller, Comptroller Bamidele Makinde, representatives of Sister Agencies and the Republic of Benin Customs Administration as well as stakeholders.
He reiterated the need for all Agencies to remain focused and committed towards the ideal of national and regional security.
“For us in Customs and indeed all other members of the Security Agencies, our task in this part of the country is critical. We have a collective mandate to ensure and enhance national security.
“We see every criminal as an enemy of the state first and foremost before you begin to talk about our mandate of smuggling, human and drug trafficking, and all of that”, he said.