In a bid to meet up the Federal Government order of 24-hours
cargo clearance at the various ports in the country, the Nigeria Customs
Service (NCS), Onne Port in Rivers State has commissioned Gantry Scanner
introduced by its service provider, Societe Generale Survellance (SGS) Nigeria
Speaking at the ceremony, the Comptroller General of
Customs, Alhaji Abdullahi Dikko said the equipment could scan about 34 trucks
per hour as against 16 per hour by the old fixed cargo scanner.
Alhaji Dikko, who was represented by the Assistant
Comptroller-General, Zonal Co-ordinator, Zone C, Port Harcourt. Mr David Agbaje noted that with the
inauguration of the new scanner, Port users would complete their port business
activities in the nation’s seaports within 24-hours.
He said the new scanners are more cost effective and
productive than the fixed cargo scanners being used at the port and enjoined
them for maximum utilisation.
The Customs boss disclosed that each of the scanners had
double tunnel that could enable it scan two trucks at the same time and with
equal image quality as the fixed cargo scanner.
Alhaji Dikko hinted that the equipment would further boost
the federal government target of 48-hours cargo clearance at the ports, adding
that it would also complement government’s efforts toward reducing cost of business
transaction at the seaports.
He further disclosed that the newly commissioned Gantry
Scanners by Societe Generale Surveillance (SGS) could pick or detect the
smallest object inside the containers as well as check under estimation of
goods by fraudulent importers in the port.
The Comptroller General however lauded the service
providers, SGS for introducing the modern facilities to scan cargoes at the
port and also thanked them for training some customs officers and warned them
against under utilisation and damages.
Earlier, the Managing Director of Societe Generale
Surveillance (SGS), Mr Nigal Balchin assured of quality services and better
utilisation of the mobile cargo scanners
as they are delicate equipment to handle and prone to moisture.
Customs Cautions Officers On Improper Dressing, Unkempt Beards
The Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) has threatened to sanction its officials for improper dressing and unkempt beards. Other minor violations include use of name tags.
This was contained in a memo issued by the Deputy Comptroller General, Human Resources Development of NCS, A.T. Babani.
The memo number HRD/2021/026 titled: “Introduction of Customs Police Caution Slip in the Service” was dated 10th September, 2021.
The memo stated that the caution slip would be issued in triplicate for minor offences such as improper dressing, use of unapproved name tags, and failure to shave among others.
The service said it has introduced the use of Customs Police Caution Slip (CPCS) as a law enforcement tool in the service.
The memo reads, “I am directed to bring to your notice that the Comptroller General of Customs has approved the usage of Customs Police Caution Slip (CPCS) as a law enforcement tool in the service.
“The slip which will be administered by the Customs Police Unit of various Zones/Area Commands would be in triplicate and once issued, a copy shall be forwarded and inserted into the officer’s establishment file.
“The issuance of the Customs Police Caution Slip (CPCS) will include offences such as improper dressing, multi-colour waist belt other than approved one and usage of unapproved name tag, failure to shave, and other sundry minor violations of the second regulation 13 of the Customs and Excise Management Act CAP LFN of 2004 as amended.
“The caution slips would serve as a proactive tool to ensure compliance to rules and regulations.
“First-time offenders, repeated offenders and consistent pattern of offence identified, shall be documented and used for strategic decisions making”.
Stakeholder Tasks RSG, MWUN On Piracy
The Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria (MWUN), Rivers State Branch, says the union and the state government need a strong synergy to tackle the act of sea piracy and all forms of criminal activities in the state’s waterways.
Chairman, MWUN, Rivers state Branch, Comrade Jonah Jumbo, in an interview with The Tide, noted that unlike in Lagos State, there was no synergy between the Rivers State Government and MWUN to curb piracy on the waterways.
“We need to work together to checkmate all forms of criminality, sea piracy and attacks on passenger boats in our waters”, Jumbo said.
Comrade Jumbo insisted that the state government and the union were working in parallel lines, hence the high rate of piracy on the waterways.
Jumbo said, lack of synergy between the state and the union was having negative turns in its operations, thereby not improving marine transport business in the state.
The chairman said the union alone cannot solve the problem of insecurity in the waterways, hence the need for collaborations between the state government and other relevant authorities.
He further noted that Lagos State was doing well in marine transportation because there was a strong synergy between the state government and the union.
“Lagos state maritime business is improving every day with more fleets because the government, stakeholders and the union are working towards ensuring success”, he said.
By: Chinedu Wosu
Inadequate Facilities At MAN Worry Mariners
The Nigerian Association of Master Mariners (NAMM) has lamented lack of simulators for training of cadets at the Maritime Academy of Nigeria (MAN) in Oron, Akwa Ibom State.
The body also decried lack of ocean-going vessels to enable the cadets of the academy acquire the mandatory sea time experience.
NAMM President, Capt. Tajudeen Alao disclosed this during an interview with newsmen, recently.
“Training at the Academy had always been as per the International Maritime Organisations (IMO) model courses”, he said.
Capt. Alao said the shortcomings have always been in the areas of lecturers, simulators and international trading ships for practical exposure.
Other challenges include lack of funding, bureaucracy and the Nigerian factor.
“Leadership of the academy too has not been based on professionalism but political consideration. The shipping companies who are end-users have not committed their services to the academy.
“The number of students per class is much more than what is obtainable in the western world.
“There are no core ship-related courses, not many courses, facilities and disciplines,” Alao said.
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