. Onne Customs urge members to vote competent
By Steve Agbota
The members of Eastern Zone of the Association of Nigerian Licensed Customs Agents (ANLCA) have unanimously endorsed the presidential candidacy of Dr. Kayode Farinto and Chief Dennis Ukwu as their Presidential candidate and Vice Presidential candidate respectively in the July 5, 2023, NECOM election of the association.
The zone, which is known for its oneness and cooperation took the unanimous decision on Wednesday in Port Harcourt during a campaign tour by both Farinto and other contestants seeking votes from the Eastern block of the association.
In his speech, Farinto who narrated some of the challenges the association faced in the last five years of its crises, also listed some of the successes they have made and promised to consolidate on them, if elected as the next president.
“Professional colleagues, today marks another turning point in the life of our great association positively. This is due to the fact that ANLCA has been engulfed in crises, which I labelled conflict between the old and new order. We thank God for his mercies and his intervention in our great Association.
“I learnt my lesson during the conflict and with the life of Tony Nwabunike Administration, Vis- a – vis intrigues, backbiting, backstabbing and deliberately circumventing and blocking good policies that would have turn around the life of our members for good. Our prayers is that ANLCA regains her lost glory on time. It is however, possible to achieve this with the new ANLCA we bring to you today.
Few days ago at the just concluded Maritme Stakeholders meeting to proffer solutions to ship building and CVFF disbursement, he said: “Barr. Emeka Akabuogu said in the area of freight forwarding and cargoes evacuation, Nigerians has remained backwards because of too much constant bickering among the freight forwarders,” he said.
He said Akabuogu concluded by saying the freight forwarding associations have done a lot of disservice to the Nigerian maritime industry as a result of continued bad blood amongst themselves.
“Gentlemen, wether we like it or not, Akabuogu statement remains the fact in the maritime Industry. It is unfortunate that many of the associations leadership have been hijacked by camp boys with their intention to kill the freight forwarding associations. Whenever we bring issues that can add value to the system, challenge the operational hiccups and human factors militating against our smooth operations . You are tagged and called many names by the enemies of progress to allow the status quo to remain, which has continued to impoverished us, deprived us of professionalism and ethics in line with International best practices.
“However, we say enough is enough. We must move this profession to its enviable level where we can now sit and compete with our international counterparts . It will interest you to know that as a result of this infighting with those non conformist, we have lost our project cargoes to foreign elements by about 95 per cent. In the East and in the association in general, I stand to be corrected; the question that we should asked ourselves is should we continue?, The answer is no.
“In view of this, I put myself forward today to contest as the National President of our great association, ANLCA. I have worked closely with Chief Dennis Ukwu and he has added value to the association in the East . Hence, I was delighted when he agrees to be the Vice Presidential candidate. If elected, we shall run an all inclusive Government with others that will be elected alongside of us NECOM members,” he explained.
However, Farinto said he has put up a 10-point agenda as a working document, even as he ask members to join him look at the 10-point agenda vividly .
“Also an idea came to me that we shall pursue aggressively, which is to eliminate the issue of Nigerian Ports Authority ( NPA) licencing and levy which have been on collection in the last three decades . It was a necessity before now, but since the ports were concessioned, It has no value to cargo clearance anymore, because the Landlord has become a tenant of what importance is this collections to cargo clearance?” he stated.
According to him, it negates the practice of Ease of Doing Business policy of the Federal government, alleging that NPA has continued to enriched herself with this collection.
“Finally, I want to thank you for your time and assure you that, if you give us your mandate, the only regret you may have is why haven’t we done this election before now,” he said.
Meanwhile the Customs Area Controller of Port Harcourt Area II Command, Onne in Rivers State, Comptroller I. Imam has called on ANLCA members to vote for a competent and capable hand to lead the association in their fourth coming NECOM election.
Comptroller Imam made the clarion call in his command when the presidential campaign team of Dr Kayode Farinto Collins, other contestants and chieftains of ANLCA paid a courtesy visit the Onne Customs Controller.
The team led by a Patron of ANLCA, Chief Henry Njoku, the presidential candidate in the election, Dr Kayode Farinto, the Vice Presidential candidate, Chief Dennis Ukwu, National Secretary, Alhaji Babatunde Mukaila among others, the Customs Controller who described Dr Kayode Farinto as a long time friend said he is the best person for the job.
“I don’t see Farinto as the Acting National President, I see him as the president. In fact he is already there, because I know he has the capacity, intelligence and is capable to lead ANLCA. If we were to be part of the voters, I will vote for him and endorsed him now. I urged you all to vote for him because he is competent and capable”.
Comptroller Imam who is barely four months old in the Command said he is having a cordial working relationship with ANLCA members and he runs an open door policy.
“My doors are open here, I don’t bar anybody from seeing me. In fact I need information and intelligence from outsiders more than even my officers. if I see you through my screen here , I will tell my officers to allow you in. Am not the best , is only an opportunity to serve . You can be the best, but another thing is to be given opportunity to Serve. So I treat everybody equally,” the Controller said.
Responding to the request for training of his members and other challenges faced by his members as posited by Farinto, Comptroller Imam said, he just built a conference hall and equipped a training centre for the Command and in the next one month he will liaise with the Onne Chapter Chairman, Chief Mike Ebeatu to seek what kind of training his members need to start training them.
On resolving operational challenges faced by freight forwarders, he said the command under his leadership will always resolve trade disputes for a win win on both sides.
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