Business Hilights
Tracking Nigeria's Headline Business News Online

LCCI hails end of Customs check-points on highways, but…

The Director-General of Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI), Mr. Muda Yusuf has commended the leadership of the Nigerian Customs Service (NCS) for keying in to the presidential drive for ease of doing business by dismantling Customs check-points on highways.

But investigations by Business Hilights showed that the directive is just figment of imagination of the Comptroller general, Hameed Ali as officials of the Service have devised permanent patrol along areas they used to mount checkpoints to beat the order after all.

Checks along the notorious Lagos-Badagry Expressway showed that they are patrolling the road between Iyanoba and Badagry and stopping and harassing motorists.

In an undercover interview with one of the officers who were armed, he simply asked “If Oga stopped checkpoints, did he abolish patrols?”

“We have not been directed to stop patrol or stop and search,” he intoned, stressing that “As you can see, we have not parked by the road side to stop vehicles, but we are just on patrols, simple”.

The Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) said on Monday that the removal of Customs check-points on highways was a reflection of the Federal Government’s commitment to promoting the ease of doing business in the country.

In a statement issued in Lagos on Monday, Yusuf said the directive will reduce extortion and disruptive activities to domestic trade, and end needless embarrassment to motorists for import duty receipts and revaluation of duty payments.

“The streamlining of their operations is therefore a welcome development. Their activities are most times arbitrary, especially on issues of vehicle valuation and documents, certifications on the highways, which often result in extortions.

“The development is a clear demonstration of the responsiveness of the present administration to complaints of the Private Sector on business environment issues,” he said.

Yusuf noted that his Chamber will work with other agencies for effective implementation framework of the policy to achieve the target of improving the ease of doing business and restoring order in the way public institutions discharge their responsibilities.