By Stephen Ubanna
For months there have been rumours making the rounds that the Seme-Krake,” One Stop ” Joint Border Post, between Nigerian and Republic of Benin, has been approved by to handle all transit cargoes from Republic of Benin into Nigeria by the Beninoise Customs Authorities.
Recall that the Value News had confronted Muhammed Uba Garba, the Seme Command Area Comptroller with the rumour but he denied it that it is not true. Only written The Magazine cited document which was written in French language with the subject matter: Restriction of jurisdiction of Customs Commands . The restriction order which was said to have been issued on February 15, 2019, by Inbussa Sacca Boco, the country’s Director General and Indirect Rights. He was said to have been copied to the country’s Technical , Departmental, Central Services Heads, Heads of Commercial Operations and Customs Posts in the country.
He was said to have also copied Ogutuase Kayode
Bocco, the Republic of Benin, Director General, was said to have made it clear to Nigerian transit cargo importers with a their agents and their counterparts in coastal countries that the policy has come to stay that ”all transit cargoes from the country’s Border Units coming into Nigeria would only pass through the Krake-Plage Customs Unit to the Seme-Krake Joint Border which was built to international standard and equipped with the necessary facilities including provision of a fixed scanner equipment by the European Union, EU, for joint examination.
Note that the connectivity platform between the countries which was recently launched by Ali, the Customs Comptroller General, was said to have made cross- Border importers and Exporters to know that once a declaration was made to the Beninoise Customs at Cotonou port, it would automatically be transmitted through the Nigerian Customs connectivity server without coming back to the country to make another declaration on such Consignment.
The Magazine visited Cotonou last Monday and cited many of the trucks laden cargoes heading to the Joint Border as there are many trucks that are already parked at the at Examination bay at the Joint Border post awaiting for their examination in turn.
There is no gain saying the fact that since the Beninoise Customs issued an order that the Seme-Krake Joint Border should be used from processing of all transit cargoes , two countries security agencies, particular their Customs Authorities now share information willingly unlike in the past where the security operatives of the two countries including their Customs personnel were suspicious of each other.
The Beninoise Customs Authorities decision may have foreclosed the efforts of Michael Abara, the Ogun Command Area Comptroller to lure importers to patronise Idiroko land Border post in taking delivery of their transit cargoes.
A senior Customs
The Joint examination of cargoes by the security operatives of the two Border nations may have exposed Muhammed, the Seme Command Area Comptroller and his Baggage and Exam
On June 28, 2019, during a joint examination of some transit cargoes at the Joint Border, led the discovery
The Seme Customs Comptroller promised that the confiscated items would be handed to
He disclosed that a suspect had been arrested in connection with the imported foreign table water who had made a written statement that the table water was imported on the request of officials of a Chinese Construction firm, which many believe is the Chinese Civil Engineering and Construction Company, CCEC, which is currently handling several multi-million some projects in Nigeria, ranging from roads, buildings to Construction of rail lines in different parts of the country.
The Command was said to have also discovered during a Joint examination within the period was a truck
The NAFDAC top official may have
Going by the law guiding the importation of Sulphuric Acid into the country,the importer must obtain a permit from NAFDAC and End User certificate from the office of the National Security Adviser, NSA which she never did, thus exposing the Consignment to outright seizure by Consignments.
The worry in Customs quarters was that the Nigerian Drug Law Enforcement Agency, NDLEA, and other other government agencies are not helping the Customs to to do their job. There was an instance where the Seme Command were said to have intercepted some cartons of tramadol but mistakenly handed it over to NDLEA instead of NAFDAC, for necessary laboratory test. NAFDAC officials were said to have protested to Customs that it was their responsibility to take custody of the items instead of going to sort out the matter with the sister agency. There were rumours that some cartons were missing from where it was kept when the NAFDAC officials insisted on seeing it but Usman, the agency Coordinator at Seme described it as false noting that the items are intact.
This may have informed the reason why the Customs Authorities are planning of resorting to plan B on how to handle such seized drugs to avoid such controversy in the future. It was gathered from the Headquarters that the Customs Authorities plans to order any Command that such seizures to destroy it publicly in the presence of other security agencies including the Department of State Security , DSS , and the Media to avoid reports of some cartons missing in transit.
The continous seizure of such illegal imports may have informed why the Seme Customs boss has read the Act to Adahunse Rashid, a Deputy Comptroller, in-charge of the Command Enforcement Unit, to intensify the anti-smuggling war to discourage other people from from indulging in such unfortunate act of smuggling prohibited items into the country.
Smuggling of Foreign parboiled rice remains a major
Between June 27 and June 30, 2019, the Command had
The Seme Customs Enforcement patrol team may have swooped on the smugglers