There are indications that the newly retired officers of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) are still in the service of the agency following the absence of a board that should rectify and approve their retirement.
The same reason has also been given for the newly promoted officers, who cannot take over their offices as there is no board to rectify the promotions.
Sources at the agency told Vanguard that the retired officers still come to work but not in their uniform.
It was gathered that the officers cannot leave the system because in the Customs And Excise Management Act (CEMA), the Comptroller-General of Customs does not have the powers to retire or promote certain level of officers without recourse to the board.
While the retirees cannot leave their offices, the newly promoted officers cannot take over.
Meanwhile, the service spokesman, Mr. Adewale Adeniyi, has denied the development, saying the new management of the Customs service has been inaugurated. He said at the inauguration, all the newly promoted officers were in attendance.
He said: “This cannot be true. The new management was inaugurated Wednesday with all the acting new Deputy Comptrollers-General of Customs, (DCGs) and Assistant Comptrollers-General (ACGs) zonal coordinators in attendance.”
Section 5 of the CEMA states that the board shall be subject to the control of the Minister of Finance in the exercise of powers and duties.
Other functions of the board includes the formulation of general policy guidelines for the service, administering the CEMA accordingly.
The board also has the power to promote, transfer and confirm appointments and dismiss persons and exercise other disciplinary action over person so appointed.
While the Minister of Finance chairs the board of the Customs service, other members of the board include the newly retired Deputy Comptrollers-General, a representative of the Ministry of Transport, representative of the Ministry of Commerce and Industry, Chairman of the Inland Revenue Service (IRS), Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN) and Nigerian Association of Chambers of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture (NACCIMA).
A source close to the service told Vanguard that the Comptroller-General of Customs can take certain decision and present them before the board when it is constituted.