Nigeria Customs Service and Benin Republic Customs administration have launched an emerging technology known as connectivity to eradicate fraudulent acts and smuggling within their joint border.
The system will also address all issues relating to trade, security and revenue through the use of the connectivity technology as it will fast track and facilitate trade between the two countries. Speaking at the official launch between Nigeria and Benin Customs yesterday at Seme border, Comptroller General of Customs, Col. Hameed Ali (rtd), said the new system would not only increase facilitation of trade but also stop the problems of fraudulent and illicit trafficking across the nations’ border.
While urging the stakeholders to take opportunity of the technology to fast track their trade, he urged both countries’ Customs to be careful in handling the system so that it would not create an avenue for smuggling, warning that all the traders may begin to circumvent the system as they can’t falsify it.
He added: “Benin Republic and Nigeria is almost like one state divided by imaginary border line.This is a unique development for both countries. This system will weed out all false declarations. If you want your imports and exports to be treated fast, you must make honest declarations. This will bring an end to trafficking.
“Both sides must tighten up against smuggling byl maximising this use of technology because lawless people may try to circumvent the system. We must block all entrances and exists where people can smuggle. From here we will move to Idiroko, Kamba and Jibya where we share borders with other countries.”
Speaking on the benefits of the system, he urged all the trader-partners to give both countries’ customs the maximum cooperation in ensuring that their documentation is correct and perfect.
He, therefore, urged importers and exporters to make sincere declarations because the system will not give room for manipulation or falsification.