Home » Nigeria Customs Reduces Checkpoints by 50% on Lagos-Badagry Expressway

Nigeria Customs Reduces Checkpoints by 50% on Lagos-Badagry Expressway

NCS Enhances Trade Efficiency with Checkpoint Reduction

by Motoni Olodun

The Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) has announced a significant reduction of its checkpoints on the Lagos-Badagry Expressway by 50%, aiming to enhance strategic positioning and improve traffic flow. This decision comes as part of a broader initiative to streamline operations and reduce congestion along one of Nigeria’s busiest trade routes.

Controller Dera Nnadi of the Nigeria Customs Service disclosed the development during a press briefing, explaining that the reduction in checkpoints is intended to make the customs operations more efficient. “We have strategically repositioned our officers to key locations to ensure optimal performance without compromising security and revenue collection,” Nnadi stated.

The Lagos-Badagry Expressway is a vital corridor for trade and transportation, linking Nigeria with its western neighbors, including Benin, Togo, and Ghana. The road has been notorious for heavy traffic and delays, often exacerbated by the numerous customs checkpoints. By halving the number of these checkpoints, the NCS aims to facilitate smoother and faster movement of goods and people.

Local businesses and commuters have welcomed the move, expressing optimism that it will reduce the time and costs associated with transportation on the expressway. A frequent user of the route, Adekunle Johnson, remarked, “This is a long-awaited relief. The checkpoints have always been a bottleneck, causing unnecessary delays and increasing our operational costs.”

The NCS’s decision aligns with broader governmental efforts to improve infrastructure and trade efficiency in Nigeria. The reduction of checkpoints is expected to have a positive impact on the ease of doing business, as it addresses one of the critical pain points for traders and transporters.

In addition to improving traffic flow, the NCS has also emphasized that the new strategy will not compromise the effectiveness of customs operations. “We are enhancing our surveillance and intelligence-gathering capabilities to ensure that smugglers and other criminal elements do not exploit the reduction in checkpoints,” Nnadi assured. This approach aims to balance facilitation of legitimate trade with the prevention of illegal activities.

The initiative is also part of a pilot project that, if successful, could be replicated on other major highways across the country. This potential expansion reflects the NCS’s commitment to modernizing its operations and adapting to the evolving needs of the nation’s trade infrastructure.

Moreover, the reduction in checkpoints is anticipated to foster better relations between customs officers and the public. Frequent complaints about extortion and harassment at these checkpoints have tarnished the image of the NCS. By reducing the number of checkpoints, the NCS aims to minimize such incidents and restore public trust.

While the initial feedback has been largely positive, stakeholders are keenly watching the implementation of this policy. The success of this initiative will be crucial in determining its scalability and long-term impact on Nigeria’s trade and transportation sectors.

In conclusion, the Nigeria Customs Service’s decision to cut the number of checkpoints by 50% on the Lagos-Badagry Expressway marks a significant step towards enhancing trade efficiency and reducing transportation delays. This move, part of a broader strategy to modernize customs operations, promises to benefit both local businesses and international trade partners. As this initiative unfolds, it holds the potential to transform Nigeria’s trade landscape positively.

Source: Tribune Online


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