OrderPaperToday- The House of Representatives has directed the Federal Ministry of Finance and the Nigeria Customs Service to procure scanners for all seaports in Nigeria in order to check corruption and proliferation of arms in the country.
In its plenary session on Thursday, the lawmakers adopted the resolution of a motion of urgent national importance raised by Mr. Nicholas Ossia (PDP, Delta) on the subject.
In his debate, Ossai reasoned that functional scanners in ports within the country would be of utmost economic importance as they would help to decongest them and improve revenue generation for the country.
The motion was widely supported by lawmakers who took turns to speak on its merits.
According to Mr. Bamidele Salam (PDP, Osun), manpower will be conserved when functional equipment are installed in ports across the nation.
“I want to add to that it is a general problem facing us as country. If these scanners are effective, they would go along way to save manpower,” he stated.
In his contribution, Mr. Sergius Ogun (PDP, Edo), noted that it is because automated systems such as scanners are not being used by the Nigeria Customs Service that corruption is thriving in the system.
“This is what some of us has always emphasised in the House. If you allow Customs to use discretion, that is where corruption comes in,” Ogun posited.
Contributing to the debate, minority leader of the House, Hon Ndudi Elumelu (PDP, Delta), noted that the motion is very germane because proliferation of arms in the country is a sign of weak gate-keeping at the ports.
He argued, “If we have functioning scanning machines, we would not have illegal ammunition circulating around the whole country. The scanning machines would be able to check all of this.”
In an interview with the chairman Committee on Customs and Excise, Mr. Yuguda Hassan (APC, Jigawa) on the motion, he disclosed that the motion has been overtaken by events because the federal government has agreed to procure scanners all over the country in borders and seaports.
“Actually, there is a committee put in place already to tackle the issue of scanners,” he added.
He, however, agreed that ” there are a lot of benefits in having scanners to function well in our ports because it would check the importation of illegal goods and ammunition in the country.”