By Adedapo Adesanya
The Murtala Muhammed Airport (MMA) Command of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) has generated N38.7 billion as revenue in the first half of 2023, representing 79.6 per cent of its annual revenue target.
The command’s Area Controller, Comptroller Mohammed Yusuf, said in a statement signed by Superintendent of Customs, Mr Victor Ogagbor, the command’s Public Relations Officer. He noted that this is 11 per cent higher than the amount raked in in the same period in 2022, which stood at N34.9 billion.
“When you compare this with the revenue in 2023, this shows a progressive difference of N3.9 billion, representing an 11 per cent increase,” he said.
The area controller said that the MMA command under his leadership had continued to build on the achievements of the previous year, both in the area of revenue generation and in anti-smuggling activities.
“Following my resumption, I have abided by the standard best practices, consequently aiding trade facilitation and ease of doing business which has significantly increased revenue generation,” he said.
In the area of anti-smuggling, Yusuf said the command made remarkable successes in the first half of 2023.
“The Enforcement Unit of the Command coordinated several anti-smuggling activities in synergy with other critical stakeholders, which led to the seizure of 15 consignments of tramadol, dried shark fins and live turtle.
“These had a Duty Paid Value (DPV) of N27.8 billion,” he said.
The customs boss noted that the shark fin and live turtle are classified as endangered species.
“In the spirit of inter-departmental cooperation, the command has handed over the packages of Tramadol to the Nigerian Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA),” he said.
Mr Yusuf called for continuous cooperation of all stakeholders and reiterated the command’s promise to sustain and improve upon revenue generation in the second half of 2023.
This is an early signal that the Service could meet its target for the fiscal year after it recorded a N400 billion shortfall in 2022 after its forecast of N3.1 trillion hit a snag.
The Customs Service was only able to generate 84 per cent to the tune of N2.6 trillion, with former comptroller-general, Mr Hammed Ali saying this was caused by factors such as the unpredicted stock market and fiscal policies of the Muhammadu Buhari-led government such as waivers and concessions.
The comptroller-general said, “Non-commencement of tariffs on carbonated drinks, telecommunications tariff, among other things, affected the actualisation of the service’s target for 2022.”