FUNCTIONS OF NIGERIAN CUSTOMS - PUBLIC RELATION OFFICERS



Customs generally play a private role in the economic life of any county. There is hardly any sector of the economy that is not directly or indirectly by the activities of customs. The functions of the Nigeria customs service include, but not limited to the following:
-      Collection of revenue (import/excise duties & other taxes (levies )  and accounting  of same:
-      Anti –smuggling activities 
-      Security functions
-      Generating statistics for  planning and  budgetary  purposes,

-      Monitoring foreign exchange   utilization etc
-      Engaging  in research planning and  enforcement of  fiscal  polices of  government
-      Manifest processing
-      Licensing and  registration of customs agents
-      Registration and designation of  collecting banks and working in collaboration with other government agencies  in all approved ports  and border station

CHAPTER THREE
ROLE OF PUBLIC  RELATIONS
The most important requirement for a public relations  practitioner is to be is to be  aware of the  political,  social and  economic environment in which he  operator.  He should equally  considered the conflicts of  interest  which the majority  of his publics suffer
the  conflicting interests are those of the family, the community, government and company. But  more often than not, the average Nigerian is a viction  of divided loyalty  and lacks identification with the government  private employer  using  his services . those   responsibilities vary  in  degree in  different organizations as follows:
a.       The  public  relations man  helps  the management to  evaluat and interpret the opinions, attitude andaspirations of the  various publics  and the  internal and external actitives  of the organization
b.      The manage crisis  and issues 
c.      To organize  a programme of  action where the public  express views on important new projects before  final decision  is reached.
d.      To inform the populace of government policies and day  to day  activities
e.      Reputation or image management : the  planning and  implementing  of policies, procedures and strategies that demonstrate an  organizations commitment to public and social responsibilities  ethical  behavior, corporate identity  and reputation with  key  public
f.       Issues management : This involves indentifying   and then developing and executing a program to  deal with them. Included  is the study of public  policy matters of concern to an organization

CHAPTER FOUR
IMAGE PROBLEM
From the research embacked  on as a public relations  student,  statistics have shown have in a panoramic  view that the Nigeria customs  have image problem.
No doubt about  that, the information  and  view of people  randomly , uniformly or in the same manner have clearly  without any  form of bias shown  or  indicated that Nigeria  customs have lapses  in the cause of discharging their duty  or in their  operation.
As a matter of fact,  there is  every tendency for image repairing   in Nigeria customs  which pave  a great  way for reputation, where by reverse of image problem will be  corrected for the betterment of the organization
THE  WAY OUT
Now, knowing  full well that  public relations is every good  tools for  image repairing  as a public relations student  I  adverse  that Nigeria customs should allow public relation  as  a matter of urgency  to work into Nigeria  customs very  well for  them  to bring out  the good or the best in them  for  the betterment of organization  and for the entire citizen of Nigeria.
Since we all know that public  relation can  make or mar the organization,  Nigeria customs  should  allow public relations  to have they full  role of  reputation or image management ; the  planning and implementing of polices, procedures   and strategies  that demonstrate an organizations commitment to public and social responsibilities ethical behavior, Cooperate identify and  reputation with  key public.
CONCLUSION
Public relations as a management philosophy should be understood to  include all effort  towards achieving organization goals and objectives as a means of ensuring that all the department of other organization  are made to understand that their  actions are what other public will use  in rating the organization
Whatever polices or rules, the institution has regarding  promotion, discipline, dismissal  and transfer should be followed  strictly and accordingly to avoid  lapses.
The organization should   seek to operate in time or provide better motivational facilities than other similar organization. It is the researcher belief that public relations is a potent tool for marketing of goods and services for good reputation of any organization in the country.

REFERENCES
Benson Eluwa (1999) Public Relation:  A Practical Approach 
Published by Virgin Creation 4 Accra Street  Uwani – Enugu, Chapter 1:3, 3:111=112

Nweke Okey F.F (2001)  Public Relations Practice, Published, (A
Division of Hamson PAL  AGNC LTD BOX  2223, Enugu) Chapter 1:1
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