The Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria has explained why one of its officials charged a passenger, Joe Abah, a N2,000 cargo surcharge.
Last week, Abah took to Twitter to complain about the extra charge of N2000 which FAAN made him pay after he already paid N35, 000 to Customs for bringing in a CCTV device in his luggage from outside the country.
But FAAN General Manager, Corporate Affairs , Henrietta Yakubu, in a statement on Tuesday, said the N2,000 was not a fee charged on dutiable items, as only the Nigerian Customs Service was empowered by law to collect duties.
In the statement titled, ‘RE: FAAN International Cargo Charge’, the FAAN spokesperson also said Abah was charged N2,000 for bringing in an item through the passenger terminal instead of facilitating such an item through the cargo section of the airport.
It read, “The attention of the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria has been drawn to a tweet by Dr Joe Abah a passenger who complained of being charged a fee of N2,000 for carrying a dutiable item in his travel suitcase and sought explanations on the legal basis for charging this fee.
“For the purpose of clarity, the N2,000 is not a fee charged on dutiable items, as only the Nigerian Customs Service is empowered by law to collect duties,” according to the response.
“The N2,000 is a cargo surcharge, and it is only applicable to items that are supposed to be facilitated through the cargo section of the airport, but being brought in through passenger terminals.
“The essence of imposing this surcharge is to discourage passengers from bringing such items through passenger terminals, as they negatively impact on the serviceability of conveyor belts and other facilities in the terminals.
“Consequently, we advise our highly esteem passengers to facilitate such items through the cargo section, where they will only be charged #7 per kilo.
“We will also like to encourage Dr Joe Abah to please make use of the cargo section for such items in the future, to avoid the N2,000 cargo surcharge being collected at the passenger terminals.”