Reasons for the closure also include non-compliance with Customs procedure. The Nigeria Customs Services, NCS, Murtala Muhammed International Airport command, on Wednesday ordered the closure of two cargo warehouses at the airport.
The warehouses were the Skyways Aviation Handling Company Limited, SAHCOL, and the Nigerian Aviation Handling Company, NAHCO.
The Public Relations Officer of the command, Thelma Williams, disclosed this to aviation correspondents at the airport in Lagos.
She said that the Comptroller General of NCS, Dikko Abdullahi, approved the closure based on the inability of the warehouses to explain the exit of goods without proper documentation.
“Other reasons also include inability to produce customs release documentation and evidence of payment of import duty and other statutory charges by the companies. This is a follow up to series of meetings between the Customs Area Comptroller, Mohammed Umar with all stakeholders, including cargo agents and freight forwarders association,” she said.
Ms. Williams said the command acted on the approval of the Comptroller General, in line with the statutory powers conferred on the Nigeria Customs Service.
She noted that other reasons for the closure included non-compliance with Customs procedure and the attendant loss of revenue accruable to the Federal Government of Nigeria, as well as its National Security implications.
“The refusal of the companies to comply has brought about unconducive working environment in these warehouses. This militates against officers and men of the command discharging their statutory duties effectively,” she said.
The Head, Corporate Communications, SAHCOL, Basil Agboarumi, confirmed the closure.
“No doubt that we are custodians of the warehouse but no goods can move out of our warehouse without the approval of the Customs. Discussions are going on between the handling companies, Custom Licensed Agents and the Customs,” he said.
The Head, Corporate Communications of NAHCO, Adesanya Onayoade, noted that the Customs has temporarily closed the customs-bond warehouse.
Mr. Onayoade said that the closure was to enable a sanitisation exercise that would ultimately improve service delivery and block all revenue leakages.