Exploit Our Dispute Resolution Mechanism, Shun Strike Action, Tincan Customs Controller Implores Stakeholders

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By; RAYMOND TEDUNJAYE, Lagos


Critical stakeholders in the freight forwarding business have been implored to always exploit the Dispute Resolution Mechanism rather than engage in industrial action.
The Customs Area Controller Tincan Island Port Comptroller Adekunle Oloyede gave the admonition during his inaugural meeting with critical stakeholders following the protests over the VIN Valuation Policy.
He pointed out that protests for whatever reason have never solved any problem anywhere in the world.
This was contained in a release by the public relations officer of the Command Uche Ejesieme made available to journalists on Tuesday.
According to the release, the Customs Area Controller reiterated the Core Functions of the Service and pointed out the role of NCS align with the Core Functions namely – Collection/Generation of Revenue, Suppression of Smuggling and Border Security, Facilitation of Trade and Enforcement of Fiscal and Monetary Policies of the Federal Government.
He spoke extensively on the VIN Valuation Policy which has generated tension leading to protests. 
Oloyede pointed out that the Service conducted series of Webinar on the subject before it was finally deployed and wondered why the issue has generated furore at a time the Service had thought the process is seamless. 
The Comptroller called on the Stakeholders to always seek engagement with appropriate authority and ensure continuous capacity building for their members especially at this period that the Service is advancing to full automation.  
On the recent protests carried out by Freight Forwarders as a result of the VIN Policy, the Customs Area Controller charged them to de-emphasize the issue of strike actions for whatever reason, as he pointed out that protests have never solved any problem anywhere in the world.
Speaking further, the Customs Area Controller spoke about the Trade Facilitation tools available in the Command and urged Stakeholders to take advantage of the tools to resolve any issue that may arise in the Clearance process. 
 He reminded them about the Dispute Resolution Committee (DRC), the Help Desk, among others as avenues where grievances can be channeled for expeditious resolution. 
The Stakeholders had ventilated their challenges beyond the VIN Valuation to other issues hindering their operations and the Customs Area Controller promised to look into the issues very dispassionately to ensure that an enabling environment is created for compliant traders.
He charged the Stakeholders to brace up for the challenges ahead particularly with the anticipated full automation of our processes and procedures and reassured that full automation will lead to ease of doing businesses.
In addition, he called on the stakeholders to embrace and become ICT savvy to enable them cope with the realities.
On the raging issue, he advised stakeholders to continue to engage and avoid situation where Agents could resort to self help and create room for miscreants to hijack the process and wreck havoc in the system.
In conclusion, he assured them of his preparedness to run an open and transparent regime to ensure that all opinions are accommodated in the Trade Value Chain.

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