It is Joseph Attah, Deputy Comptroller of Customs (DC), who has been going around several places in Nigeria, and who has also explained the benefits of the recently approved customs modernization project, telling journalists that there is nothing to fear about the latest project.
In an interview with newsmen, he clarifies his role as the deputy comptroller of customs and the national relations officer of the organization. He is solely responsible for sensitizing stakeholders and others about the latest occurrences in the customs and makes plans for new implementations.
Attah clarifies that e-customs is part of the ongoing modernization of the service in Nigeria, calling it an end to the automation of custom processes and procedures. According to him, the World Customs Organization (WCO) encourages every member state to seek collaboration and emerging technology in modernizing their operations.
Of course, the Nigerian customs service has always been on the lookout for new ways of using technology to benefit Nigerians, while engaging partners and stakeholders. Having presented it to members of the public, it is a positive move to make e-customs the approved means of ensuring global best practices.
The new project will run for 20 years and be powered by the Public-Private Partnership (PPP) program. The funding for this project will run into billions of dollars. The consortium of firms will gradually recoup their investments as time goes by.
e-customs service for Nigerian customs will include installation of non-intrusive equipment such as scanners on all entry points, e-Ports, e-logistic monitoring, cargo tracking, which also suggests that customs service will gradually migrate from manual services to electronic.
Agents will still operate normally the way they operate, said Attah, but the entire process will go through automation. Many of the things that cause frictions, such as physical intervention, delays, complaints, and other vices will be greatly reduced.