Concord Times (Freetown)
Revenue collection at customs and excise department of the national revenue authority (NRA) has shown that while growth rate was about 10 per cent from 2006 to 2007, the margin dramatically increased to 17 per cent in 2008.
Yearly performance records of annual comparative position reached 29 per cent by 2008, suggesting that customs revenue has been improving all the while even in the midst of the global financial crisis.
Documents available to this press indicate “the yearly comparative performance between January and October of 2006 and 2008 are as follows: In 2006 the customs revenue (in million) was Le233, 046.40; in 2007 customs revenue (in million) was Le256, 278.30 while the customs revenue (in million) for 2008 is Le301, 492.03.”
For share of revenue collection per station for this year alone, Customs House alone collected about Le29, 931, 941, 851.00 (Twenty-nine billion, nine hundred and thirty-one million, nine hundred and forty-one thousand, eight hundred and fifty-one Leones, ninety-one cents).
Meanwhile, the post in Kambia collected Le389, 334, 293. 85; Baggage Hall collected Le365, 010, 737.67 and Susan’s Bay/Government Wharf collected Le30, 396, 996.00.
Mano River Bridge collected Le15, 034,717.00 while Lungi, Sania, Kabala, Kailahun, Bo/Kenema/Gbangbatoke and Kono ten million each totaling Le31,762, 475, 624.17.
A senior customs officer told Concord Times that “the dramatic increase in revenue collection was unprecedented despite the pull-him-down syndrome directed at the able Commissioner whose innovation has completely changed the administration as compared to the previous administration he inherited.”
But with all the achievements made by customs and excise department in revenue collection over the last three years, some accusing fingers have been pointed at the commissioner.