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Customs deny auctioning cars for N10,000

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The Nigeria Customs Service has refuted claims suggesting that it charged N10,000 as duties to the Federal Government through its e-auction platform for the sale of seized vehicles. 

The NCS emphasized that such information is both misleading and misrepresents the facts.

According to the NCS, the vehicles listed on the auction platform had a reserved price of N400,000. Abdullahi Maiwada, the Customs National Public Relations Officer, stated that the auction process provided equal opportunities for all Nigerians who placed bids on vehicles.

It was revealed that many of the seized exotic vehicles are currently under litigation and cannot be auctioned to the public until the courts rule on their forfeiture to the Federal Government.

Providing data from the completion of five successful bidding windows on its electronic auction portal, the NCS reported that 13,605 applicants registered, 476 vehicles were uploaded, and 462 were successfully auctioned. The Federal Government reportedly earned N556,738,736 in revenue from the auctions.

Maiwada expressed the NCS’s discontent with allegations that cast doubt on the integrity of the e-auction process, emphasizing the organization’s commitment to accountability and transparency in all its activities. He stressed that the NCS Auction Committee operates within the confines of the law and adheres strictly to established guidelines for disposing of seized/overtime goods.

Denying allegations that over 300 vehicles were auctioned to a single individual via the e-auction, Maiwada labeled such claims as false and baseless. 

He clarified that the nominal sum of N10,000 allegedly collected as duties to the Federal Government on the e-auction window, given a reserved price of N400,000, is indeed misleading and misrepresents the facts.

 “Furthermore, suggesting that a token sum of N10,000 is collected as duties to the Federal Government on the e-auction window, which has a reserved price of N400,000, is indeed misleading and misrepresentation of fact.”

“(A total of) 13,605 applicants registered in five windows on our e-auction portal where 476 vehicles were uploaded and 462 won. Also, the government realised N556,738,736 as revenue. It begs the question of where the allegations are coming from.

“We wish to reaffirm our commitment to transparency, accountability, and adherence to the rule of law in all our activities. We urge members of the public to join the service with the common goal of promoting an inclusive system that is fair to all Nigerians, irrespective of their status,” he said.

Maiwada encouraged the public to verify auction details with Customs’ commands and formations across the country before making any payments for auctioned items. 

He also reiterated the NCS’s dedication to transparency, accountability, and adherence to the rule of law in all its activities, urging the public to collaborate in promoting a fair and inclusive system for all Nigerians, regardless of status.

 

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