Connect with us


Customs Destroys N70m Poultry Products



The Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) destroyed about 20,000 cartons of smuggled poultry products worth over N70 million impounded by both Federal Operations Unit (FOU) and Seme Command of the service.

The Customs Public Relations Officer at FOU, Zone ‘A’ Ikeja, Mr Uche Ejesieme, told newsmen on Tuesday that the unit seized 16,391 cartons of the poultry products between June and November.

He said that Dr Abdullahi Dikko, the Comptroller General of Customs, had passed a circular on zero tolerance on poultry products, adding that Comptroller Dan Ugo, the Head of the Unit, was determined to ensure strict compliance.

Ejesieme said that the duty paid value of the seized poultry products was N62.3 million.

“Between Monday and Saturday, we made total seizure of 1,117 cartons of poultry products and we made sure that we seized the means of conveyance,” he said.

The Seme Command of NCS also said it impounded over 3,000 cartons of poultry products in the last three months valued at between six to eight million naira.

The Public Relations Officer of the command, Mr Ernest Olotta, told         nesmen on telephone that the controller of the command had fortified the anti-smuggling team.

He said that some officers of the command had been strategically positioned in various places to check smuggling.

Olotta said the efforts of the controller had suppressed smuggling to the barest minimum.

“If smuggling stops, Nigeria stands to gain through job opportunities for the youths and there will be more foods and we can export our poultry products to other countries, “ he said.

“We have the capability to produce for local consumption and to export,’’  Olotta said.

Mr Jonathan Nicol, the Secretary General, Shippers’ Association of Lagos State, told  newsmen that local supply of poultry production had not met the demand.

“Smuggling is rampant, either because the supply to the mega hotels is high or because the ordinary man in the street does not have access to the few available local poultry products.

“The cost of buying chicken locally is twice the amount one buys from smugglers,” he said.

Nicol urged government to remove the ban placed on poultry products, adding that such measure would reduce smuggling.

A freight forwarder, Mr Ben Ndee, suggested that the National Assembly should recommend in the new Customs and Excise Management Act (CEMA) (Amendment) death penalty for smugglers.

“Smuggling, in whatever guise, is condemnable and a heinous crime against the economy of any nation, particularly ours in Nigeria.

“More so, the inherent danger to the lives of officers and men of the Nigeria Customs Service, many of whom have lost their lives in preventing poultry products smuggling and outright duty evasion, “ he said.

The maritime expert suggested that government should also encourage local poultry farmers by granting soft loans to increase production of poultry farmers and discourage smuggling.

A freight forwarder, Mr Lucky Amiwero, said that smuggling of poultry products had killed the local industries, adding that there should be protection for local industries.

“The restriction is to protect the local industries. If they have gone through NAFDAC clearance, it means there are no health issues, but this is not the case with smuggled poultry products.

“Government should look critically at this area of the economy, refocus and possibly set up a committee to address the problem in the poultry sector,”  Amiwero said.

He said that smuggling was thriving in Nigeria because demand for poultry products was high and local production could not meet the demand.

Continue Reading
Click to comment

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply


CAC Registers 245,000  SMEs Free Of Charge



The Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) says it has registered more than 245,000 Small and Medium Enterp-rises  free of charge.
The Registrar-General, Alhaji Garba Abubakar,  said in Abuja on Wednesday that it did this with the approval of the Federal Government.
The Federal Government, he said, approved the free registration of 250,000 business names as part of its intervention to assuage the economic effect of Covid-19.
He said the Federal  Government paid 50 per cent of the cost of registration to CAC and more than 245,000 business names were consequently registered.
Abubakar explained that the process was electronic and applicants also got their certificates electronically.
He added that the numbers were divided between the 36 states of the federation and the FCT noting that Lagos, Abia and Kano States had the largest numbers.
He said free registration of 6, 606 business names was approved for 33 states while Abia, Lagos and Kano States would have 7, 906, 9,084 and 8,406 respectively.
Abubakar noted that aggregators were appointed and paid to collect SMEs information and submit same to CAC.
He explained that the commission provided special access for the aggregators for effective service delivery since they were responsible for scanning and uploading of documents.
He added that CAC had to take over from one of the aggregators appointed for two states but failed to deliver.
Abubakar said also that the intervention of CAC and appointment of substitute aggregators to take over in the two states sped up the process, already nearing completion.
“We are hoping that by end of September the exercise will come to an end,’’ he said.

Continue Reading


IPMAN Seeks Foreign Partnership For Robust Refinery Deal



The Chairman, Rivers State Chapter of Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN),  Mr King Eppie, has said that he would be seeking the partnership of foreign bodies as part of his plans to strengthen the association.
Eppie said this when he spoke in a chat with newsmen in his office in Eleme, Eleme Local Government Area, Rivers State, Wednesday.
He pointed out that such plans would also encourage business growth especially to some of his members whom he said are  experiencing stormy business weather.
According to him, the challenging business condition was as a result of  non functional refineries in the country, stressing the need to seek for partnership.
He said that since its core business area was petroleum products, that his leadership would do all within its reach to improve the  system.
The Rivers IPMAN boss,  expressed hope that the ailing refineries in the country would bounce back to life.
“ I will be happy to see the refineries working again. Most of our members are suffering and business is no longer what it used to be, that’s why I want the refineries to come back to operation”, he said.
About the issue of legal battle in the association, he said that his team has been vindicated by the Apex court by declaring him the authentic chairman of IPMAN in Rivers State.
He recalled that the association was in a legal battle for about eight years, but expressed joy over its victorious end.
To those who were on the other side of the divide, he said that he has extended an olive branch to them as part of his plans to run an  all inclusive government.
“ The platform for those who went to court against us has been created for them to come back to the fold. IPMAN is one in the state and we are open to all, that is why we want everyone to come back”, he said.
The Tide learnt that the IPMAN chairman is  barely one week in office after years of legal battle that greeted the association as a result of leadership tussle.

By:King Onunwor

Continue Reading


1,818 MSMEs Benefit From Covid-19 Recovery Package In Delta



No fewer than 1,818 Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) have benefited from Federal Government and the World Bank Covid-19 Action Recovery Economic Stimulus (NG-CARES) in Delta.
Governor Ifeanyi Okowa addressed the beneficiaries at the launch of funds disbursement in Asaba on Wednesday.
He commended the Federal Government and the World Bank for the partnership to provide succour for those affected by the pandemic in the country.
He said that now that the scheme had been domesticated in the state, the beneficiaries were in the first phase of the programme.
Okowa also lauded the Nigeria Governor’s Forum (NGF) for supporting the federal government to ensure that the programme was approved by the World Bank for implementation in Nigeria.
He also thanked the World Bank for the intervention and for working with state governments in the country towards cushioning the socio-economic effects of Covid-19 pandemic on the people, particularly the poor and vulnerable.
According to Okowa, today’s ceremony is a major step at putting MSMEs that are badly hurt by the pandemic on the path of recovery and growth.
He said this was “more so, with the disbursement of funds to the first set of 1,818 beneficiaries who have met the World Bank stipulated eligibility criteria within the initial six months.
“A total of 2,529 MSMEs are expected to receive grants to support post-covid-19 loans, operational costs and to enhance their IT capabilities.
“Indeed, we are glad to be part of the CARES programme of the Federal Government.
“The focus of intervention clearly aligns with the priority of the state government to give relief to those whose lives, businesses, jobs and means of livelihood have been distorted by the pandemic.
“The programme, which we have domesticated as the Delta CARES, is a two-year emergency recovery programme.
“It is aimed at supporting state governments’ budgeted programme of expenditures and interventions.
“It is to enable them to expand access to livelihood support, food security services, and grants for poor and vulnerable households and firms,” he said.
He said that the programme would also directly support 25,269 poor and vulnerable households with social transfers, basic services and livelihood grants.
The governor said it would as well support 13,976 farmers to boost food production and ensure smooth functioning of the food supply chain.
“The outlined figures are the targets stipulated by the World Bank, but do not preclude the State Government from scaling up if the need arises.
“It is my expectation that those charged with the implementation of Delta-CARES will be faithful in executing the mandate so that the desired results are achieved, bearing in mind that it is a Programme for Result (PforR),” Okowa said.
On his part, Dr Barry Pere-Gbe, Chairman, Steering Committee for Delta-CARES and State Commissioner for Economic Planning, commended Okowa for providing the funds for the programme.
Pere-Gbe was represented by the Commissioner for Youths Development, Mr Ifeanyi Egwunyenga.
He said that the main focus of the programme was to bring succour to residents whose means of livelihood had been disrupted by the impacts of Covid-19.
He said that the programme was hinged on three thematic area.

Continue Reading