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Okorocha Calls For Igbo Traders, Customs’ Summit - Politics - Nairaland

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Okorocha Calls For Igbo Traders, Customs’ Summit by Abogwara: 11:01pm On Feb 21, 2018
Rochas Okorocha, governor of Imo State, has called for a summit between Igbo traders and officers and men of the Nigerian Customs Service at the highest level for understanding and to correct some impression in some quarters that some of the actions and policies of the Customs were targeted at the Igbo traders.

This, he said, could be false and erroneous.

The Governor also advised the Customs’ personnel to concentrate on the nation’s borders in doing their work, instead of mounting road blocks in the cities, stressing that if the Customs’ personnel do what they are expected to do at the borders, they have no business mounting road blocks again in the cities.

Governor Okorocha spoke when Mr. Azarema. A. Abubakar, the Comptroller of Customs, Federal Operations Unit Zone C, Owerri, paid him a courtesy call at the Government House Owerri.

He regretted that there had been a very dangerous communication gap between the Customs authorities and the Igbo traders or businessmen, adding that communication was crucial in the relationship between the two interest groups.

He said, “Custom Operatives should concentrate at the borders and not inside the cities, chasing goods or materials that have passed the borders which show leakage at the borders. Once the goods have passed the borders and enter the cities, checking them becomes the duty of the Police and no more the functions of the Customs’ officials.”

He Custom officials have no business mounting road blocks inside the cities adding that the issue of under-payment should not be the responsibility of the Customs and that the Nigeria Customs should also assist the NDLEA to fight illicit drugs, because the NDLEA does not have the needed personnel and resources to fight illicit drugs.

He said, “I request that the Customs’ authorities come down to Imo State or anywhere in the South-East and talk to the Igbo traders because 90 percent of the importers are Igbo. Come and talk to them and explain to them why the Customs take the actions or do some of the things they do that do not go down well with the importers.

“Our people misunderstand some of these Customs’ actions.”

He stressed that the impression in the country now is that the Igbo are being witch-hunted by the Customs on daily basis because they are Igbo. While that may not be true, he added that there is need to give them proper explanation to some of these actions.”

He added, “Due to this lack of communication, some corrupt Customs officials take advantage of it and extort money from innocent importers. I will be ready to discuss with my brother governors on this summit. This will help to smoothen the relationship between Customs and Igbo importers because for now the relationship is sour and not good for our national unity.”

He said, “Another problem that must be taken care of is the situation where somebody would clear his goods at Apapa Wharf with receipts and when the person gets to Owerri or Aba, they will stop him and insist that he underpaid.

“It is not the duty of somebody who is here to decide whether somebody underpaid or not in Lagos instead people that cleared him should be held responsible. This double payment of Customs duties should stop, especially on this side of South-East. This is extortion in my understanding.”

Mr. Azarema A. Abubakar, Comptroller Customs, Federal Operations Zone C, had earlier told the governor that Zone C, was made up of South-South and South-East with headquarters in Owerri, adding that the South-East was the hub of trade which makes it incumbent on them to seek for cooperation and support of the governor.

He said besides checking illegal goods or imports, the Customs also had to do the job as a security agency, adding that they would work closely with all the relevant persons and bodies.

Re: Okorocha Calls For Igbo Traders, Customs’ Summit by HallaDaTruth: 11:07pm On Feb 21, 2018
Okorocha is suffering from too much wisdom
Re: Okorocha Calls For Igbo Traders, Customs’ Summit by Nobody: 11:57pm On Feb 21, 2018
okorocha can not be wrong all the time, this is good idea from owelle

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