BEVERLY HILLS, March 14, (THEWILL) – The Comptroller-General of the Nigeria customs service (NCS), Hameed Ali, on Tuesday, met with the Senate President, Bukola Saraki, in Saraki’s office at the National Assembly complex.
Ali arrived at the senate wing of the complex a few minutes before 6pm and held a private meeting with Saraki.
Ali’s visit comes a few hours after the Senate reaffirmed its resolution to summon him over the customs’ planned seizure of vehicles without paid duty which it told the customs to suspend following a loud outcry from Nigerians which greeted the planned action.
The senate passed a resolution, asking the agency to suspend the action, pending an investigation into the exercise, but NCS rebuffed the resolution.
This irked the Senate and Ali was summoned to appear before the Senators in a customs uniform.
He however wrote a letter to the Senate, which was read in plenary on Tuesday, saying he would not honour the invitation of the Senate citing the need to attend a management meeting of the customs.
However, there are indications that President Muhammadu Buhari had directed him to answer to the summons of the Senate which prompted his quick visit to Saraki.
He has however written another letter to Senate President Bukola Saraki, saying he is seeking legal advice on the directive of the senate that he should wear a uniform adding that he would not be available on Wednesday because he is bereaved.
“May I respectfully refer to your letter dated 9 March and inform Your Excellency that the decision on payment of customs duties by vehicle owners who do not have them as prescribed by law is currently being reviewed,” he wrote.
“The goal of the review is to take a broad additional input from the stakeholders and the public. I will welcome the opportunity to avail the senate of our findings.
“Regarding to wearing of uniform, I wish to advice that the senate avails itself of the legal basis of its decision to compel me to wear uniform. I am similarly taking legal advice on this issue so that both the senate and I will operate within the proper legal framework.”