… Describes Story Alleging Compromise as False

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Customs Area Controller of Kano/Jigawa Command, Comptroller Dauda Ibrahim Chana, has reiterated the commitment of the service to facilitate genuine trade without compromising government policy, especially as they affect special economic areas like the Kano Free Trade Zone.

According to him, recent media reports alleging loss of government revenue through the operations of the Kano Free Trade Zone is untrue and far from the reality as the command has strategically positioned officers to ensure due diligence is done in the management of finished products within the zone or from any of the excise factories under it’s watch.

A statement signed by Customs Public Relations Officer, Kano/Jigawa Area Command, SC Saidu Nuraddeen stated that the Comptroller said those who accused men of the Customs of illegalities in the succeeded in displaying ignorance about activities of the Nigeria Customs especially in the areas of Duty, Import and Export processes and the laws guiding trade activities in the Free Trade Zone

According to Comptroller Chana, the claims that customs officers are conniving with some business men to divert finished products to the Export Processing Zone and pay only 30% Customs duty or sometimes pay nothing is unfounded, describing it as mischief to undermine the good intention of the Federal Government for creating the Zone.

Comptroller Chana stated further that, “contrary to the allegations of revenue lost, the Kano/Jigawa recorded Six Hundred and Thirteen Million, Three Hundred and Sixty-Nine Thousand, Two Hundred and Four. Eighty-one Kobo (613,369,204.81) between January-April 2024 as against One hundred and thirty-two million, four hundred and thirty-six thousand, seven hundred and sixty-six (132,436,766.00) in 2023; a clear indication of rise in revenue generation by our men”.

While advising reporters to seek clarification in the interest of truth and objectivity by contacting his office or the Public Relations Officer to get a balanced report on the command’s activities, Comptroller Chana reminded them that Nigeria Export Processing Zones Authority (NEPZA) regulates the zone’s activities.

He added that unless there is an intention of exporting to Customs territory, NCS officers do not interfere with the zone as it ensures prevention of smuggling and duty evasion within all its areas of responsibility.

According to him, records are taken for proper duty collection and calculation .

He also reminded that the NCS is not the only government organisation in the zone while restating that the command adheres strictly to the law and defined rules of engagement

“In the Free Trade Zone, there are productions taking place, there are manufacturing taking place and the end product of all these are finished products and for these to go out, duties are paid so how does anyone come to the conclusion that finished goods are being moved out of the zone without paying duty or given illegal discount or destined for Customs territory?

“It is also good for the public to know that goods or raw materials locally sourced are duty free as well as exportation.

“Let it also be on record that the process of clearance involves many stages and we even have a unit domiciled in every Command that check after clearance of goods cleared for anomalies, so no officer can connive because the documents are all intact to show what transpired. This makes the allegation of compromise baseless.

“In line with the directive of the Comptroller General of Customs, Bashir Adewale Adeniyi, that all commands strengthen community relationship with stakeholders, the Kano/Jigawa Comnand maintains robust relationship with all operators in the import, export and manufacturing chains including the Kano Free Trade Zone and even transport operators” Comptroller Chana said