CRFFN has lost its relevance to Freight Forwarders—Farinto
—as Amaechi imposes yet another chairman on incoming Council
The Freight Forwarders in Nigeria should not expect meaningful contributions to the development and welfare of industry operators from the incoming governing board of the Council for the Regulation of Freight Forwarding in Nigeria(CRFFN) due to the overbearing influence of government which has effectively castrated their performance.
As long as the Act which established the council still subsists and is not amended, the Council will continue to be a rubber stamp for government decisions that may not favour the yearnings of the freight forwarders.
Making this assertion last week in his office, Kayode Farinto, the Vice-President of the Association of Nigerian Licensed Customs Agents(ANLCA) lamented that the Council has been hijacked by the government which has destroyed the lofty aims and objectives of the initiators of the body.
Farinto, who retained his seat on the council through his reelection at the recent Council elections that were held in the three centres of Lagos, Abuja and Kano, declared that until and unless the Act which established the Council is amended to reflect the desires and aspirations of freight forwarders and whittle down the domineering influence of the Minister of Transportation, the Council cannot and will not meet the needs of the practitioners of freight forwarding business.
”I have said it severally that the CRFFN has been hijacked by the government which has turned it into one of its parastatals.
”If you look at the composition of the council, there are 15 elected freight forwarders and 17 non-elected. members.
”By that composition, whatever we even want to have in the council for the freight forwarders, we are already defeated.
”It is therefore very unfortunate that the lofty idea of having a council for the freight forwarders has been turned into the arm of the federal government”, Farinto lamented.
He revealed that the Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, has hijacked the running of the council through the imposition of successive Chairmen.
The ANLCA chieftain further disclosed that the minister has once against imposed the chairman on the incoming governing board, even before it is constituted and inaugurated, an action similar to what he did to the last council.
”Even now, the minister has already told us in one of our meetings with him before the elections that we should go and do our elections, that he already has his Chairman.
”This is very unfortunate. And the minister is relying on section 6 of the Council Act which gives him as the Minister the power of directive. It is on that power he is relying on to impose chairman on the board.”
Farinto alleged that the desire to control the funds accruable from the controversial Practitioners Operating Fees (POF) was the driving force behind the government interest and takeover of the Council
”The issue of POF is what the government is interested in and this may affect the performance of the new council.
”And there is nothing anybody can do about that until the Act is amended which this council will pursue.
”There must be an amendment which is long overdue because the present council as it is constituted cannot serve or protect the interests of freight forwarders.
”There are lots of things happening in the industry which the council should have intervened.
”There is too much baggage on the council and until the Act is amended, it will be ineffective.
”As it were now, the council is supposed to give direction on the VIN policy controversy, the Council ought to have condemned the attitude of the Nigeria Customs Service over the matter but the council cannot do that because it is considered as a government agency and a government agency cannot criticise another government agency.
”The CRFFN being regarded and run like a government agency is an aberration and that was not the intention of the initiators of the Council”, Farinto declared.
He said the incoming council will pursue the amendment of the Act that will reflect the desire and aspirations of freight forwarders but warned that if this attempt fails or is frustrated by government apologists on the board, the body of freight forwarders may pursue the creation of another bod which will take care of their interests.
”Perhaps, if all attempts to amend the Act to reflect the true objectives of the body fail or frustrated, then maybe we have to pursue the creation of another body that will truly protect the interests of freight forwarders.
”As it stands now, the CRFFN cannot protect the interests of freight forwarders because any lofty ideas and programmes for freight forwarders would be killed by the government representatives who are more in numbers on the board”, the fiery critic declared.
ANLCA postpones NECOM election to July 5th as ASECO releases fresh guidelines
Following the death of the erstwhile chairman of the Association Electoral Commission(ASECO) of the Association of Nigerian Licensed Customs Agents( ANLCA), Mr. Alloy Anukwuru, who died in April 2023, the new Chairman of the electoral body has released a fresh guideline for the much-anticipated election.
In the new electoral timetable released by the new chairman of the eight-man electoral committee, Nze Aloysius Emeka Igwe, whose appointment by the board of the association sequel to the death of Anokwuru, was announced about a week ago, the ANLCA NECOM election will now hold on July 5th, 2023.
This is about less than a two-month extension from the original date of May 25th, 2023 as earlier announced by the electoral body when it was headed by late Anukwuru.
According to the new electoral guideline signed by the new Chairman of ASECO, Emeka Igwe and Alhaji Mustapha Yakubu, the ASECO Secretary, there will be registration of voters at the Western Zone(National Headquarters), Eastern Zone(Onne) and Northern Zone(Abuja) from May 17th -June 2nd, 2023.
Also, the sales of nomination form/letter of intent closes on May 26th, 2023 while the final submission of the original nomination form is slated for between May 26th- 30th, 2023.
Electoral petitions by aggrieved members or participants will be entertained from June 2nd-9th, 2023 while the publication of the aspirants/first provision voters list will be between June 5th -9th, 2023.
The verification and the screening of original documents of voters in the Western Zone hold between June 12th-15th, 2023 while the verification and screening of licenses of voters in the Eastern Zone takes place June 19th -21st, 2023 and that of the Northern Zone takes place between June 22rd-23rd, 2023.
The screening of the aspirants is slated for July 3rd, 2023 while the publication of the final voters and candidate list will also be done on July 3rd, 2023.
The proper election and declaration of results by the returning officer holds on July 5th, 2023, thus ushering in the new executives that will pilot the affairs of the battle-weary ANLCA for a single term of five years.
Aftermath of Anokwuru’s death: ANLCA appoints Alloy Igwe as new ASECO chairman
ANLCA holds NECOM elections May 25th as ASECO releases guidelines
The eyewitness reporter
The much-anticipated elections into the National Executive Council of the Association of Nigerian Licensed Customs Agents(ANLCA) holds on May 25th, 2023.
According to the election timetable released by the Association Electoral Commission(ASECO), a copy of which was sighted by our reporter, the notice of election has been published on April 11, 2023, while the registrations of voters will be conducted by ASECO at the ANLCA national secretariat from April 12th to 28th, 2023.
The guideline, dated April 11th, 2023, also revealed that the electoral committee will entertain letters of intent from interested contestants from April 12th- April 28th, 2023.
Also, nomination forms with elections guidelines will be on sale from April 12th- April 19th, 2023 while the final submission of the original nomination forms and other requirements by aspirants will be on the 27th of April 2023.
Furthermore, the screening of aspirants will take place from May 2nd-May 9th, 2023 while election petitions will be entertained May 10th -18th, 2023.
Also, a provisional list of voters and candidates will be published on May 19th, 2023 while there will be a joint ASECO/BOT/NECOM meeting on May 22nd, 2023 to consider and resolve election petitions.
The final voters and candidates list will be published on May 23rd, 2023.
May 25th, 2023, will be the D-day when the elections will hold and the results declared by the returning officer.
Following the consummation of the peace pact between the two warring parties in ANLCA which ushered in an era of peace in the association that was on the boil for five years, a seven-member electoral body called ASECO, headed by Mr. Alloy Anukwuru, was inaugurated to conduct elections into the association’s NECOM.
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