- Pix: At Comptrollers Dera Nnadi-Peter Kolo handover
The new Area Comptroller of Ogun 1 command of the Nigeria Customs Service, Comptroller Dera Nnadi, has observed that despite the feats achieved by all in the past, there are still daunting challenges bedeviling the command’s various operations, which also limit its quest to maximise anti-smuggling operations, known as the core mandate of the command for now, given that the border has been closed for over two years.
Speaking at the official handover ceremony at the command, Comptroller Nnadi, who takes over from Comptroller Peter Kolo, told officers and men of the command that everyone under the command, including the leadership and followership, cannot afford to fail the Nigerian nation and the stakeholders by not taking it to an enviable height at this time, hence the need to confront challenges squarely.
The challenges, he said, include the issues of multiple illegal routes, poor integrity of the supply chain along the border corridor, incessant attacks on personnel at the land borders and limited number of personnel to man the vast border entry points, among others, which hamper operations at the command, despite the various efforts being put in place to arrest the situations.
He insisted that these challenges, as daunting as they may appear, are, however, not a justification for non-performance, as much is always expected of all.
He noted that, as part of measures to surmount these challenges, the command, under his watch, would partner all legitimate stakeholders to continuously improve and reinvent the entire personnel for the common goal and objectives of the service, assuring that the command would pursue the five-strategy mandate vigorously in order to achieve the set goals. The mandate include sustaining its status as the foremost anti-smuggling command in Zone A, if not for the entire service; upholding the Customs’ rules of engagement and integrity in the conduct of officers as well as the operations in the command; facilitating legitimate trade at the command when hopefully the borders are reopened and pursuing a robust stakeholders’ engagement across the command’s area of responsibility (AoR).
Going forward, Comptroller Nnadi plans to sit and map out strategies for actualising these objectives in due course, almost immediately, and expressed the hope that everyone has agreed to join him in actualising the mission while also agreeing with him to lead by example.
He thanked the Comptroller General, Col Hameed Ali (rtd) and the entire management team of the service for reposing the confidence on him while particularly, expressing appreciation to the Zonal Coordinator, Zone A, Lagos, Assistant Comptroller General Nike Aremu, Comptroller Kolo, his predecessor and Comptroller Michael Agbara as well as other officers and men of the command for sustaining the successes recorded in the command in the past years. He also saluted the various stakeholders whose cooperation and synergy contributed to the feat recorded by the officers in the command.
Nnadi’s speech reads inter alia : “I am glad to resume duty as the Customs Area Comptroller of Ogun 1 Command. I thank God Almighty who made this day possible. I also thank the CGC and the management of NCS for endorsing this will of God. I am resuming in this office with a high sense of responsibility knowing that this Command has tremendous significance to Nigeria Customs Service, Ogun State and Nigeria.
“The reason is obvious. This is the gateway command, with potential of not only being a major regional trade hub for West and Central Africa and beyond, but can also be an example of coordinated border with Nigeria’s proximate neighbours. I want to thank Comptroller Peter Chado Kolo and Comptroller Michael Agbara and officers and men of the command for sustaining the successes recorded in the command in the past years. I also wish to thank our various stakeholders whose cooperation and synergy contributed to the feat recorded by the officers in the command.
“Top among this group are the intervention Customs Units, sister security agencies, most especially the Nigerian military. It is also very important that we appreciate the Traditional Rulers, community leaders and the youths who aligned with the command in actualising her mandate. Again, I give credit for this feat to the two immediate Comptrollers of the command especially, Comptroller Peter Kolo with whom I visited over 20 traditional rulers and engaged with the heads of all security agencies in order to establish this status.
“I am resuming at the command knowing that though it has consistently recorded numerous achievements in the past, a lot is still desirable and expected of us by the stakeholders which include the CGC, management of the service, Zone A coordinator, the officers and men in the command and of course, the border community with whom we expect strong partnership in the enforcement of government policies. Other government agencies who partner the service also expect us to continue to play the role of a lead agency and we cannot afford to let them down.
“Similarly, we hope to live up to the expectations of the law abiding and legitimate trading stakeholders comprising the brokerage agents and freight forwarders, the importers and exporters and other ancillary service providers whose business must survive on the noble role played by the Customs in the border community. Of course, I will not forget our media partners who I hope will help propagate and highlight our missions.”/SHARE THIS