By Innocent Orok
The National Association of Government Approved Freight Forwarders ( NAGAFF) 100% Compliance Team has petitioned the Customs Area Controller of Apapa Command over the maltreatment and inhuman treatment mated to them and their goods at the Sifax 2 and Unity bonded terminals. But terminals are under Apapa, Customs Command.
Addressing journalists on Tuesday in Apapa, the NAGAFF, National Coordinator of its 100% Compliance team, Alhaji Ibrahim Tanko lamented how its members and other freight forwarders are suffering, saying if the matter is not address, they will escalate the it.
The petition reads, “We want to petition against unequipped/ flooded and marshy Sifax 2 and Unity bonded terminals at Paache Close, Amuwo Odofin Industrial Layout and Okota respectively. You may not believe the high suffering of our members, other Agents, port users and even the Customs officers serving in that terminal
“It may interest you to know that our containers are being dropped on flooded grounds for examination and you must put on a rain boot to be able to access the terminal. This has led to some of the examined container contents being damaged, most especially those in cartons and thereby creating problems between our members and our clients.
“At Unity bonded terminal, there’s no forklift to bring out palletized goods for examination, and this has kept us down for weeks, while the demurrage continues to rise at terminal and shipping company.
“Same scenario goes to Sifax 2 Bonded terminal, Okota where you get a flooded, marshy and smelly ground floor.
“We therefore want to draw the attention of the Customs Area Controller to the noncompliance attitude of these terminal operators in that respect.
We will be forced to escalate this matter should these terminal operators fail to live up to expectations and stopped or dare to take demurrage from our members.
“Counting on the Area Controller’s strong will and professional disposition; we have against this background, sincerely want to question Customs prerequisites, conditions or the minimum standard that must be met before approval for opening a bonded terminal?. Furthermore, are there no Customs monitoring/ compliance Unit in this regards? and; what is the punishment for offenders for noncompliance?, the petitioned concludes.