The new Customs Area Controller in charge of Area 1 in Port Harcourt, Mr Warikoru A. has assumed duty. He took over from Comptroller Dan Ugo. The new controller was formerly in charge of PTML Command in Lagos.
One of the legacies left by the Comptroller Dan Ugo was that during his tenure, the revenue profile of the command hit the N1billion mark, a feat which had hitherto been difficult to attain. Similarly, the new system of payments and clearance of goods popularly called ASYCUDA++ was formally commissioned during his tenure, even though he was not the one who started it.
Meanwhile the new area controller has demonstrated his readiness to improve the service delivery of men of customs in the command as he has swung into action immediately by meeting with stakeholders.
One of such parleys was held in his office with representatives of shipping trade group led by its chairman, Rev. Miebaka Lugard and Melford George; leader of berthing committee.
Comptroller Warikoru told the meting that he is ready to run an open administration and always ready to listen to their complaints and challenges that may be affecting their business. “Whatever influence and respect I enjoy in the society today is because of this job and the position I hold, so I take my job very seriously. Be free to call me, anytime, even on weekends, and I will definitely attend to you”, he assured them.
One of the issues the group raised up with the new Comptroller was the delay in getting sailing clearance for their ships after they finish discharging their consignment at the port.
They said it was even worse on weekends, when there was no custom personnel to attend to them, thereby delaying the ship for 48 – 72 hours.
Another issue raised was the alleged payment of N2, 500 for the documents to be processed in the ASYCUDA++ system that was commissioned recently. Comptroller Warikoru promised to look into their complaints immediately so that there can be trade facilitation in the ports.