By Steve Agbota                                

The Africa Association of Professional Freight Forwarders and Logistics of Nigeria (APFFLON) has condemned Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) and its Internet service providers, Messrs. Webb Fountain, over the incessant sever failure.

The association is threatening to drag NCS to court, as the server failure has led to additional cost for freight forwarders as a result of demurrage.

In a statement by APFFLON President, Otunba Frank Ogunojemite, and made available to newsmen, the recurring server failure in Customs operations has grossly hindered freight forwarders and their importers from taking delivery of their consignments in good time, even as shipping and terminal charges accrue.

He said: “It has been substantiated that the server failure has grossly affected the revenue drive of various Customs commands, leaving marks of frustration on the faces of Customs Area Controllers who unfortunately, have no immediate solution to the challenge.

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“APFFLONhas said it would file a lawsuit against Nigeria Customs Service, on behalf of freight forwarders, to ensure that they recover every kobo they lost due to server failure within the period. We are prepared to assist the affected freight forwarders; we urge them to come forth with their claims backed up with documented facts in this regard.

“As an advocacy group in aviation and maritime we advised those having delivery challenges occasioned by server failure, to state how long it took them to capture their SGD; additional storage charge incurred; as well as other difficulties associated with it, assuring them that their right to litigation can be fully exercised if they would join APFFLON to seek redress, promising to recover in full, every additional cost associated with the challenge, provided the agent tenders the documents via the aforementioned links” he stated.

The association assured that it would always stand up against injustice meted out to freight forwarders in the course of carrying out their professional duties.

The association urged the Federal Government to immediately sack the Nigeria Customs internet service providers, Messrs. Webb Fountain, for gross incompetence which it said, has grossly jeopardized its policy on Ease of Doing Business, as well as hindered trade facilitation.