President Muhammadu Buhari is not aware of plans by the Comptroller-General of Customs, Dikko Abdullahi to resign from office, says Presidential Spokesman, Mallam Garba Shehu. In response to an enquiry, Shehu who is the President’s Senior Special Assistant on Media, said, “Sorry I know nothing about it”.
Abdullahi, a staunch supporter of former President Goodluck Jonathan and Buhari’s kinsman – both are from Katsina State – reportedly sent his resignation letter to the President on Friday last week.
When contacted, Customs National Public Relations Officer, Deputy Comptroller Wale Adeniyi also denied knowledge of Abdullahi’s resignation. However, authoritative sources said that resignation or not, Abdullahi would be replaced by the President “in the next few days. It is inevitable. We’re in a new era of change where things would have to be done differently,” the source said.
Meanwhile the National Association of Government Approved Freight Forwarders (NAGAFF) has appealed to President Buhari to seek advice from industry stakeholders before appointing a new Comptroller-General of Customs.
The association made the appeal in a press statement it in Lagos. In the statement by its Head of Special Duties, Dipo Olayokun, NAGAFF appealed for the appointment of an officer that would sustain Dikko’s legacy as the next Comptroller-General of Customs. “It is our opinion and advice that the input of the critical stakeholders may be sought because we know the officers and men of the service better.
“The ongoing reform and anti-corruption crusade of the present administration requires an officer of honour, integrity, knowledge, zero tolerance for corruption, IT compliant, a trade facilitator and a team player of responsible partnership in Customs operations. We shall be forwarding three names that we consider most appropriate for Mr. President’s consideration, who shall be able to sustain the high tempo of the outgoing CGC reforms. The shoe he is leaving behind is quite too big in the area of revenue function, anti-smuggling, infrastructure, welfare of officers, capacity building, information technology, innovation in risk management technique, trade facilitation and partnership in Customs operations, trade intelligence gathering and international affiliations.”
He explained that is on record that the outgoing CGC is a bulk breaker. “ His capacity and guts to confront the monopoly of certain individuals who carry on with their businesses against the Customs laws with impunity speaks volume of his penchant for excellence,” Olayokun said.
By Pita Ochai