The Nigeria Customs Service resumed the electronic auction of vehicles impounded from smugglers on its web portal but several Nigerians have lamented their inability to participate in the process.
The auction, a yearly ritual since 2017, was introduced to decongest the Customs’ warehouses.
On Monday, Joseph Attah, the customs spokesperson, announced the re-opening of the process in a statement.
“Following the re-engineering of the Nigeria Customs Service e-auction process, the electronic portal is now opened (live) for interested persons with valid Tax Identification Number (TIN) to log in and bid for items of their choice,” Mr Attah, a deputy comptroller of customs, said.
For the current window, the bidding period opens 12 noon Monday and closes 12 noon Wednesday every week, the statement added.
“Please note that the process is fully automated and requires no physical intervention of any kind to win.”
But several Nigerians who tried to participate in the process complained that the web portal would not accept their Tax Identification Numbers (TIN), among other things.
The possession of a TIN, issued by the Federal Inland Service (FIRS), is one of the requirements to participate in the process.
Applicants are also expected to pay a non-refundable “administrative” fee of N1,000.
But no sooner had the announcement been made than Nigerians besieged the Customs’ social media handles with complaints.