- Acting Customs’s CG bans Task Forces, Patrols
Acting Comptroller-General, CG, of Nigeria Customs Service, NCS, Dr. John Atte, has promised to wipe out corruption in the service as well as increase the present revenue-generation capacity of the organisation.
In this regard, he has given marching orders to all Customs’ commands and units to brace up to the new challenges.
Atte directed Area Controllers to increase weekly average revenue from the current N13billion to N35billion while all illegal taskforces and patrols have been banned with immediate effect.
These were part of the outcome of his maiden meeting with senior officers of the NCS at its corporate headquarters in Abuja, yesterday.
The strategy session of Customs Management and Area Controllers, presided over by Dr. Atte was convened to discuss various areas of revenue leakages and put in place measures to plug them.
Atte, formerly a Deputy Comptroller-General, DCG, in charge of Finance, Administration and Technical Service, FATS, took over from the immediate past Comptroller-General of Customs, CGC, Abdullahi Dikko on Wednesday.
He was the most senior officer and he is expected to hold forth till President Muhammadu Buhari either confirms him or appoints a new CGC. He is known in the Service as Mr. Anti-Corruption by colleagues because of his zero-tolerance for corruption and illegal activities of any sort.
In line with the anti-corruption posture of Mr. President, Dr. Atte has directed the immediate setting up of anti-corruption seats in all Area Commands to monitor officers’ conducts and report to his office accordingly.
On anti-smuggling activities, the Federal Operations Units were directed to intensify their border patrols to bring smugglers to book.
The meeting also directed an immediate review of operational procedures to give maximum effect to the ban on hinterland patrols in the country. Similarly, he disbanded all Task Forces under any name or guise operating in all seaports, airports and land borders with immediate effect. Officers serving in these units will be withdrawn and redeployed.
Atte equally directed Area Commanders to take full control of their areas, stressing that they will be held responsible for personnel misconduct and discipline in their jurisdictions.
Furthermore, all patrols domiciled in the hinterland, no matter how called, are to be disbanded to allow for free movement of goods and services.
He also ordered all Federal Operations Units and other enforcement units of area commands to re-enforce and increase their presence in all land borders with a view to curtailing trans-border crimes before they grow into threat to internal security.
Atte said: “Henceforth, the zonal coordinators are to take full charge of all area commands under their jurisdiction as they would be held accountable for any reported case of corruption or subversion of revenue.”
With this marching order, the acting CG directed a weekly review of revenue targets and evidence of seizures which will now form the basis of the officers’ deployment to the field.
After the meeting, the officers who were in joyous mood with the new leadership, promised to deliver as directed.