Senate draws battle-line with Customs Boss Hameed Ali

Posted by News Express | 14 March 2017 | 2,173 times

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•The Senate during plenary.

The Senate has insisted that the Comptroller General of the Nigeria Customs Service, Rtd Colonel Hameed Ali, must appear before lawmakers at the plenary on Wednesday, to explain the proposed retrospective policy on import duties on cars.

The Senate which is against this proposed policy had summoned the Customs CG to appear before lawmakers attired in the Customs uniform, to explain the reasons behind the policy.

However, the Customs CG has written a letter to the Senate informing lawmakers of his Inability to appear before the Senate at plenary on Wednesday, because of a routine management meeting of the Customs Service.

He has asked the Senate to postpone the interaction to a later time.

But the Senate has rejected the letter describing it as a slight to it and

insisting that the Customs CG must appear unfailingly at plenary on Wednesday.

Earlier, members of the Senate Committee on Customs had questioned the Customs boss for taking some actions without the approval of a Customs board.

The committee invited Colonel Ali to the National Assembly in Abuja to give reasons for certain actions he took in the last few months.

Some of the actions that were criticised by the lawmakers on Thursday included the promoting and dismissal of some officers in the service.

The Senators noted that the Customs boss went above his powers in performing the actions without the approval of a Customs board.

They added that they were not satisfied with the explanations given by the Comptroller-General and frowned at his refusal to wear the uniform of the service.

The Senate, then ordered the Customs Comptroller General to appear before its Committee on Customs in plenary in appropriate uniform.

This followed the uproar that greeted the Customs Service’s new directive on duties to be paid on imported vehicles which is yet to be abated.

The Senate had earlier in a resolution, asked the Comptroller General to shelve the plan until he appeared before its committee, they however, now want him to appear in uniform.

•Adapted from a Channels TV report.


Source: News Express

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