In an effort to further strengthen the relationship between the Nigeria Customs Service, Oyo/Osun Area Command, and its host communities, the Customs Area Controller, Comptroller Ben Oramalugo, has embarked on a familiarization visit to outstations in border towns of Oyo and Osun States. This visit aims to foster a good relationship between the Nigeria Customs Service and the host communities at the border areas.
In a statement released on 27 October 2023 and signed by the Command Public Relations Officer, Superintendent of Customs Kayode Wey, on behalf of the Customs Area Controller, he noted that the familiarization visits took place on October 24th and 25th.
During these visits, Comptroller Ben Oramalugo paid homage to the Soun of Ogbomoso land and the Okere of Saki land in Oyo State, as well as the Ataoja of Osogbo land, the Ogunsua of Modakeke land, and the Ooni of Ife in Osun State.
The Customs Area Controller, however, explained that the initiative aligns with the directives of the Comptroller-General of Customs, Bashir Adewale Adeniyi, MFR, to promote robust relations between the Oyo/Osun Area Command and the host communities.
The CAC stated, “This official visit is aimed at fostering stronger relationships between the Oyo/Osun Area Command of the Nigeria Customs Service and the host communities, as well as promoting mutual understanding and cooperation while mitigating conflicts between members of the respective communities and officers of the Command.”
During the visit, the Customs Area Controller and the delegation of high-ranking Customs officials engaged in productive discussions with the esteemed traditional rulers in the region. Their deliberations centered on various issues, including trade facilitation, revenue generation, community development, suppression of smuggling, and promoting lawful trade practices.
Ben Oramalugo highlighted the commitment of the Nigeria Customs Service to the promotion and facilitation of trade, combating the smuggling of contraband items, arms, and ammunition, hard drugs, and the enhancement of revenue generation through the enforcement of the required laws and regulations.
He reiterated the importance of the public’s support in achieving these objectives. He expressed optimism for future collaboration and partnership with the respective traditional rulers in the Oyo and Osun states.
He expressed his gratitude for the warm reception received. He emphasized the importance of collaboration between the Nigeria Customs Service and traditional rulers for effectively implementing Federal Government policies and regulations that would be enforced by the Oyo/Osun Command.
Furthermore, Ben Oramalugo recognized the crucial responsibilities that traditional rulers bear as defenders of culture and leaders of their communities. He affirmed that it was imperative to increase their understanding of Customs operations and regulations.
“While recognizing the vital role of traditional rulers as custodians of culture and leaders of their respective communities, this visit is also aimed at increasing your understanding and raising awareness about Customs operations, regulations, and the importance of compliance among the respective host communities,” he stated.
The traditional rulers similarly appreciated the visit and the opportunity to engage with the Customs Controller of the Oyo/Osun Area Command and his management team. They equally assured the Customs Area Controller of their unwavering support and commitment to promote legitimate trade and combat illicit trade within and around Oyo/Osun Area Command.
“We express our profound gratitude for this visit and the opportunity to interact with the Customs Area Controller, Oyo/Osun Area Command directly. We acknowledge the significance of Customs operations in maintaining national security, economic stability, and the overall well-being of our communities. Hence, we call on the Federal Government to better equip the Nigeria Customs Service and its Commands for better service delivery,” one of the traditional rulers added.