Home News SON Debunks Claim of  Collapse Online Application Portal by Farinto …….says only non Compliant Importers cry foul on Demurrage 

SON Debunks Claim of  Collapse Online Application Portal by Farinto …….says only non Compliant Importers cry foul on Demurrage 

by timenews
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The Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON) has debunked the claim by one Kayode Farinto over a purported collapse of its online application portal for the operation of the offshore Conformity Assessment Program (SONCAP) for processing of SON regulated imports into Nigeria describing it as a blatant lie.

A statement endorsed by the Head, Public Relations, SON Bola Fashina stressed that rather, it is those importers who fail to comply with the pre-shipment process who are crying wolf on accumulation of demurrage  on their consignments.

According to the SON’s PRO, the portal was recently upgraded to ensure optimal performance, enhance a seamless operation and more efficient service delivery to customers and stakeholders alike.

Fashina, disclosed that some of the advantages the upgraded SONCAP portal offers are:
–       a one-stop-shop that provides clients opportunity to apply, track application, send messages to SON and receive responses as well upload evidence of payments seamlessly
–       profile of the work done and documents used for application are available on Clients’ dashboard
–       No more Tax Identification Number (TIN) error
–       No more mistakes in company name etc.

Fashina alluded to a recent challenge in transmitting approved and activated SONCAP certificates to the National trade portal which according to him was not peculiar to SON but all other trade related agencies from January 22, 2020.

He stated that the issue has since been rectified on the national trade portal and all pending SONCAP certificates transmitted to the Nigerian Integrated Customs Information System (NICIS) portal as at February 1, 2020.

On the claim that imports were accumulating demurrage as a result of the gap, Fashina explained that the SONCAP is a pre-shipment process, stressing that only non-compliant importers, who apply for the certificates after the arrival of their consignments are crying foul.

He said some importers who brought in about 182 containers into the country without following the pre-shipment conformity assessment process are those trying to circumvent established procedure and crying wolf.

According to him, such consignments would naturally be subjected to scrutiny, seized if found to be substandard while those behind them would face prosecution.

He however advised importers to follow the import procedures strictly by ensuring that they process their product and SONCAP certificates offshore rather than looking for short cuts after the consignments have arrived Nigeria.

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Dr. Kayode Farinto

It would be recalled that on Monday, the National Vice President of Association of Nigerian Customs Licensed Agent, ANLCA, Dr. Kayode Farinto  during a Press Briefing at the International Maritime Press Centre of Maritime Reporters Association, MARAN, Apapa, Lagos State accused SON of refusing to give agents PAAR to enable them clear their goods from the Port.

According to him, “SON must agree with Customs that any regulated item (may be we go back to the old system) where you allow the clearing agents to clear their consignment,then you can now send their officers to consignees warehouse for any check they want to do. The reliability of this system is 50 – 50 from my investigation but we cannot have a system collapse system because SON regulated item in the Port is over 35%.
Dr. Farinto recalled notifying the  DG SON, Osita Aboloma  of their problems and intending actions against the organisation through a note, but no response to that effect.
He threatened to encourage  their members to go to Court. if the problem was not rectified under 24 hours because of the huge amount of money they are going to loose as a result of the problem which was no fault of theirs.
Dr. Farinto who is also a member,Governing board of CRFFN  however called on the Nigeria Customs Service to provide solution because everywhere  in the whole world, Customs Service is the Lead Agency, adding that if they cannot , then they have a problem.

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