Customs Hits N1trn Highest Revenue Collection

 The Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) yesterday officially confirmed that it has recorded its highest revenue collection of over N1 trillion. The collection is against N770 billion target set for the service in 2017.The Service’s Public Relations Officer, Mr Joseph Attah, announced this at a news conference in Abuja, thus confirming Shipping Position Daily newspaper story of December 4.According to him, the revenue realised this year is a historic figure ever made in the Customs.Attah, who described the revenue performance as spectacular, noted that the N1.01trillion was collected with about five working days to the end of the 2017 fiscal year. He said the revenue collection for this year is N241.68bn higher than the target of N770.57bn set for the 2017 year. The actual revenue, according to him, is above the N898.67bn collected in 2016 He said the agency recorded the revenue collection despite the economic recession experienced earlier in the year with the low volume of imports which was caused by restrictions placed on 41 items from accessing the foreign exchange. He said: “NCS has recorded the highest revenue collection ever of N1,012,259,006,779.74 with five more working days to the end of 2017.“This spectacular performance in revenue collection shows N241,685,276,289.74 over the N770,573,730,490 target for the year and well above the N898,673,857,431.07 collected in 2016.“(This is) Despite the economic recession experienced earlier in the year, with low volume of imports and restriction placed on 41 items from accessing Forex.To achieve the revenue collection target, Attah said the Comptroller-General of Customs, Col Hameed Ali (Rtd), took some measures which include strategic redeployment of officers and men of the service, overhauling and retraining of operatives of the Customs intelligence unit and a regime of prompt reward for hard work and punishment for offenders. Other measures are maximizing the potentials of automation through monitoring, tracking infractions, blocking and recovering lost revenues; transparent promotion process strictly based on merit and deliberate stakeholder engagements across the country. “The Comptroller-General of Customs (CGC), retired Col. Hameed Ali, undertook some strategic measures in terms of restructuring and repositioning the service for efficient service delivery which resulted in this historic revenue figure from the service this year,” Attah said.Attah said that the NCS strived to deliver, adding that sometimes even at the risk of sustaining serious injuries or even death.“Sadly in the process of enforcing the laws, six officers fell in the line of duty this year,’’ the spokesman said.He said that the Customs boss had directed sustained onslaught against smugglers, especially at this festive period.Attah, however, said that in the spirit of the season, all stakeholders were enjoined to reflect on the value of patriotism and resolved to avoid all forms of smuggling.“It is clear that given the right leadership and better support from Nigerians, NCS will continue to play a more pivotal role in the security and economic well-being of the nation, ” he said.