Nigerian Government Commissions Mobile Cargo Scanners

David Adekunle, Lagos

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The Nigerian Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed has commissioned three mobile cargo scanners to checkmate the inflow of illegal and other prohibited items to the country through the ports.

Mrs Ahmed implored the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), port terminal operators and all stakeholders in the ports to cooperate with the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) to take full advantage of these scanners.
The commissioning covers the ones installed at the Tin Can Island Port in Lagos as well as Onne Port, while each of the scanners has the capacity to process and scan over 500 cargoes in a day.
It would be recalled that in July 2020, the Federal Executive Council (FEC), approved $18.12 million for purchase of the cargo scanners, which were delivered last year December to ease Ports operations and eliminate 100 percent examination, which used to fuel corruption at the ports and slow down cargo clearance procedure.
Speaking at the commissioning of the three new Nuctech Mobile Scanners for the Customs, Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed commended the Federal Executive Council (FEC) under the leadership of President Muhammadu Buhari who granted approval for the procurement and Installation of the Scanners and also the training of 120 Customs officers.
She said the project would no doubt aid the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) in the delivery of its mandates, in line with the key priorities of the President Muhammadu Buhari-led Administration targeted to reduce poverty and stimulate favourable macroeconomic conditions for sustained growth and development.
According to her, the scanner has the capacity to detect prohibited imports concealed in cargoes, adding that it enables more cargoes to be scanned and brings about the desired efficiency and effectiveness in cargo examination processes.
“The commissioning of these three non-intrusive scanners is in line with efforts to expedite Customs operations and achieve its mandate of ease of doing business, trade facilitation and preventing port congestion.
“These three scanners will help increase revenue for the government and improve national security. It will also help enhance the remote audit trail of goods within the port system,” she said.
Also speaking, the Comptroller General of Nigeria Customs Service Col. Hameed Ali (rtd) expressed gratitude to the Nigerian government for procuring fully owned Three Mobile Scanning machine for the Service.
“It gives me great pleasure to be here with you and to witness the commissioning of our newly installed mobile scanners. Indeed, for all of us who in one way or the other are involved in the facilitation of trade across international borders, today’s event will go down in history as a watershed moment.”
 According to Col. Ali, the Nigeria Customs Service will be fully responsible for the management and operations of this equipment.
He reiterated that the Service Modernisation project seeks to automate all processes and procedures, of which the inspection of imports and exports is fundamental.
“We know that to remain competitive our ports have to be more effective and efficient. As trade increases in volume, so must our capacity for facilitation.” he added.
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