Reps to probe alleged Customs’ failure to sell off contrabands

Abuja, March 16, 2017 (TNE): The House of Representatives on Thursday in Abuja mandated its Committee on Customs and Excise to investigate the failure of the Nigerian Customs Service to auction confiscated goods.

This followed the adoption of a motion on the “Need to Investigate the Failure of the Nigerian Customs Service to Auction Confiscated Goods”.

The sponsor of the motion, Mr Prestige Ossy (Abia-PDP) said that ban on the auction of goods seized by the NCS had resulted in the forfeiture of such goods to the Federal Government.

Ossy expressed worry that since the ban took effect in 2015, “it had resulted in the proliferation of seized goods at various formations of the Nigerian Customs Services”.

He noted that goods seized in large numbers from different parts of the country include vehicles, consumables, clothing materials and containers of assorted household goods.

The lawmaker said that instead of auctioning the seized items worth billions of naira, the service left them to degrade.

He said “most of these goods, especially the vehicles with Duty Paid Value (DPV) with worth of more than N6 billion, are rapidly dilapidating and depreciating in value.

“The Customs Service will eventually spend huge amount of money in disposing them when it ought to have generated huge revenue for the government by auctioning them before they weather away,” he said.

Ossy said that Customs had announced the establishment of an auction sale website in 2015, but said two years on, the website has not functioned.

“The failure to auction goods in its custody has denied the Federal Government over N1 trillion which ought to accrue to it from the auctioning of those goods,” he said.

After the adoption of the motion, the house passed it to the Committee on Customs and Excise to investigate and report back in eight weeks. (TNE)


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