As part of his orientation tour to Zone A, the Acting Comptroller General of Customs, Bashir Adewale Adeniyi MFR, visited the Lekki port and its surrounding areas on Wednesday, July 20, 2023.
The visit commenced at the Lagos Free Trade Zone Area Command, where he was warmly welcomed by the Area Controller, Dorathy Yisa-Omogbehin.
During the visit, the Acting CGC emphasized the numerous advantages the free zone concept offers to the country. He encouraged the customs officers to foster strong partnerships with investors while upholding the values of integrity and transparency.
“In service provision, we must ensure we are at our best in service delivery. I will also encourage you to collaborate with our investors, support those that are compliant, report and apply sanctions to those that are not”, he noted.
“Our officers must cultivate a high sense of integrity and transparency in what you do”, he emphasized.
Speaking, he noted, “The concept of free zone promises the country many benefits, in terms of foreign investment, provision of jobs, creating foreign exchange and of course transfer of skills and technology to Nigeria”.
The Customs Area Controller, Comptroller Dorathy Yisa-Omogbehin, emphasized the Command’s activities, pointing out that accommodation stands as a noteworthy challenge. Additionally, she proudly announced that the Command has achieved an impressive revenue generation of over N27 billion this year.
“The most challenging thing is accommodation, we have a lot of work to do here, but we lack accommodation. We have to send some of our officers to town. If we must do our work well, the officers must be around.
“In terms of revenue, this year, we have generated N27.5 billion, we have also issued demand notice, and our intervention stands at N1. 2 billion this year”, she noted.
The Acting CGC paid a visit to the Lagos Free Zone, Lekki Port, and Lekki Free Zone Development Company. During his visit, he received a warm reception from the Chief Executive Officers, management teams of the organizations, and representatives of sister agencies and stakeholders.
The delighted boss expressed the commitment of the customs services to provide full support in facilitating and enhancing trade activities in Nigeria.
He also encouraged partner agencies working with customs to embrace and embody the principles of the free trade zone concept.
“As a responsible agency of government, we want to pledge our support and as a deliberate strategy, I want to let you know that I will be open to regular dialogue with you so that those prayers you talked about, we will be able to surmount them”, he said.
“There is still a lot of misunderstanding about the operation and concept of the free trade zone in Nigeria, so you do have the responsibility to promote a better understanding, not just customs but also agencies of government that are involved in the administration and management”, he added.
The Acting CGC concluded the day’s proceedings by embarking on a tour of the Dangote Refinery.