Forty per cent of revenue collected from imports by the Nigeria Customs Service is through dubious means, says former chairman, National Association of Government Approved Freight Forwarders, Segun Musa.
In a chat with Financial Street on Tuesday, Musa added that importers were always extorted because they don’t have anybody to report to.
He, however, accused the management of the NCS of contributing over 70 per cent of the country’s economic problems.
Musa stressed the need for the NCS to be privatised for maximum efficiency.
His world’s, “Customs contributes over 70 per cent to the Nigeria economic problems. This shows that once Customs is privatised or restructured, the exchange rate will drop immediately, cost of commodities will also drop in markets and the government revenue will increase tremendously.
“My candid opinion is that stakeholders should continue putting pressure on the Federal Government to facilitate efforts to privatise or restructure the Customs to grow our economy and encourage investment that will reduce joblessness. This will further encourage more investors that has left the country due to frustration.”
The former governorship aspirant for Lagos State said it would be difficult to expect productivity from Customs with 70 per cent of its staff as billionaires.
“We can not continue accommodating an agency that over 70 per cent of its staff are billionaires and expect productivity. The truth is bitter, but we must stand and speak to power if truly we want this country to progress,” he stated.
He also accused the management of NCS of frustrating all efforts to reduce human interference at the ports.
“Unfortunately, the Customs is so powerful that ordinary automating systems initiated by the Federal Government last year was influenced and the government kept mute since then. We pushed for migration from Asycuda ++ to Ncis2, to reduce interface with the Customs, still they shut down some platforms on Ncis2, so that stakeholders would still go and negotiate with them at the CPC before opening it,” he said.
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