Customs insists Form ‘M’ required to process all imports

…As CAC Shoboiki alleges plot to remove her from office

CAC  MMA Command, Jayne Shoboiki

The Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) Murtala Muhammed Airport Command (MMA) has insisted that Form ‘M’ is a prerequisite for processing all imports for clearance.

In a statement on Monday, Spokesman of the Command, Ephraim Haruna, said the requirement of the Form ‘M’ is a Federal Government trade guideline, and not a wish of the command.

It reads in part: “For the avoidance of doubt, Form ‘M’ as a prerequisite for importation into Nigeria is not a policy of the Command, but a guideline of Federal Government of Nigeria.

“The guidelines say, any person intending to import physical goods into Nigeria shall in the first instance process the e-Form ‘M’ through any Authorized Dealer Bank irrespective of the value and whether or not payment is involved.”

The command also said that the recently implemented Nigeria Integrated Customs Information System II (NICIS II) makes provision of Pre-Arrival Assessment Report (PAAR) a must, and that PAAR cannot be gotten without Form ‘M’. 
It would be recalled that agents operating at the MMA Command had down tools in protest against the introduction of the Form ‘M’ as a compulsory requirement for processing cargo clearance however small the item is.

The command, however, said that prior to the introduction of the NICIS ll, it held a two-week sensitization training at the Zonal Headquarters Yaba, and the Apapa Area Command respectively that included customs officers, clearing agents, and other stakeholders.

Meanwhile, the command also stated that the Customs Area Controller, Jayne Shoboiki’s attention “… had been drawn to a call for her removal by some members of National Association of Government Approved Freight Forwarders (NAGAFF) led by its Vice President in charge of Air Logistics, Western Zone...”

While the command stated that the aggrieved agents had claimed bias in dealing with them, it appealed to stakeholders that the CAC was open to attend to everyone equally and that the command remained focused on suppressing smuggling, collection of appropriate duties and trade facilitation.

The command also advised that all stakeholders should study properly the requirements of importation under the new dispensation, and comply appropriately in order to compliment efforts of the customs service in smooth trade processes.