Lagos-based car dealers on Wednesday visited the Nigeria Customs Service, Federal Operations Unit, Zone ‘A’ with documents of their vehicles to prove they were not smuggled into the country.
This move comes days after car dealer outlets across Lagos, including Coscharis, Globe Motors, Stallion Motors, Elizade Motors and Westar Associates, were shut down by men of the NCS Comptroller General’s task force and officers attached to the FOU.
The Customs suspected the car outlets were harbouring vehicles that were smuggled into the country through the Seme border.
The dealers, who had their papers inspected, were later escorted by the Customs officials to the car sales points. This enable them to carry out further inspection of the vehicles.
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A Customs spokeperson said:
“If the vehicles are found to be genuinely imported, the shops would be opened”
The dealers, who were unanimous in their condemnation of the clampdown by the outfits, also wondered why the Nigerian Customs Service only focused on the southern part of Nigeria.
They also added that the Nigerian Customs Service should direct their energy on smugglers in the northern part of the country who don’t contribute anything to the economy.
Also, a dealer on the Mainland alleged that harassment by the Nigeria Customs Service has continued for about five years:
“Whereas nothing of sort happens to dealers in the North.
All the car dealers in the north never get harassed or checked. For your information, cars in the North come through the Niger Republic without paying duty.
The government agencies should do their work but not one-sided or at the detriment of the economy.”
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