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Freight Monitor

Compt. Oloyede, Tin Can CAC, wades into Clarion bonded terminal debacle

Ibrahim Tanko
—–as NAGAFF tackles NAGAFF compliance team.
Opeyemi Adesogbon
The continued picketing of the Clarion bonded terminal by the 100 percent Compliance team of the National Association of Government Approved Freight Forwarders (NAGAFF) has caught the attention of the Tin Can Island Customs Area Controller, Comptroller Olakunle Oloyede.
The CAC, whose command superintendents over the beleaguered bonded terminal, has called for a stay of action from the agitating freight forwarders who have been picketing the bonded terminal since Monday at the behest of the NAGAFF Compliance team.
The Chairman of the NAGAFF anti-graft unit, Alhaji Ibrahim Tanko, told our reporter that Comptroller Oloyede had called a truce meeting with the NAGAFF High command where he promised to look into their demands and resolve the matter.
The NAGAFF Compliance team has mobilised irate freight forwarders who stormed the premises of Clarion bonded terminal on Monday over a disputed transaction.
They have accused the terminal operator of holding on to 14 vehicles of their members over what they called a trumped-up allegation of owing customs a DN of N8.5m over the clearance of 19 containers, an allegation which the importers of the vehicles denied.
They also claimed that all necessary charges on the vehicles have been fully paid
They accused the operator of the bonded terminal of complicity in the disappearance of the controversial containers, alleging that the operator used the license of one of the importers to perpetrate the illegal transaction.
Since, Monday, the protesting customs brokers have grounded operations at the terminal, demanding the release of the seized vehicles.
However,  Alhaji Tanko said the Tin Can Area Controller has promised to prevail on the terminal operator to release the seized vehicles and made the owner of the facility account for the 19 disputed containers.
“The Founder of NAGAFF, Dr. Boniface Aniebonam, the National President of NAGAFF, and myself held a meeting with the CAC, Tin Can today (April 6th) where he asked us to shelve the picketing of the terminal.
”He promised to look into the matter and assured us that the seized vehicles will be released and the issue of the 19 containers revisited” Tanko declared.
He however took a swipe at  Emmanuel  Umeadi, the KLT Chapter Chairman of the National Association of Government Approved Forwarders (NAGAFF), who described the 100  percent Compliance team picketing of Clarion bonded terminal as witch-hunting and done in bad faith.
Alhaji Tanko dismissed the claims of his fellow member as those made with envy and frustration as he may be one of the corrupt freight forwarders who connive with the operator of Clarion bonded terminal to perpetrate illegal transactions.
Emmanuel Umeadi had accused Tanko of usurping his(Umeadi) position as the Chairman of the KLT who has oversight functions over the Clarion terminal.
“The allegation against the operators of the Bonded Terminal is likened to “giving a dog a bad name in order to hang it”.” the NAGAFF  KLT Chairman began.
“This is to inform the general public that the continuous picketing of Clarion Bonded Terminal by the NAGAFF 100% Compliance Team led by Alhaji Ibrahim Tanko, is being done in bad faith.
” The KLT Chapter of NAGAFF wishes to disabuse the minds of the freight forwarding community of this image tarnishing allegation, which in the actual sense, has no modicum of truth attached to it.
” Emmanuel Umeadi, whose oversight function is extended to Clarion, has unequivocally condemned the picketing of Clarion Bonded Terminal by 100% Compliance Team without seeking his opinion, not only that, the whole exercise is roundly seen as a usurpation of power as the National President of NAGAFF, Chief Tochukwu Esisi and the NAGAFF high Command are likely not in the know of this unwarranted act of recklessness.”
But Alhaji Tanko explained that Clarion bonded terminal is not under the supervision of KLT but Tin Can Customs.
“That is why the Tin Can CAC intervened in the matter and not KLT”
”That is why I informed the NAGAFF Tin Can Chapter Chairman of our intention”
He also stated that contrary to the false claims of Emmanuel Umeadi, Dr Aniebonam, the NAGAFF Founder and the National President are aware of the development.
“If they were not aware, why did the two, including myself, hold a peace meeting with Tin Can CAC? he asked.
Tanko further disclosed that the Port Police, Customs High Command in Abuja and Tin Can Customs command are all aware of the incident.
He, therefore, dismissed the allegations of the NAGAFF KLT Chairman as the ranting of an ant that has no basis other than it was made out of envy and frustration that the compliance team has destabilised the unholy alliance with the operator of the Clarion bonded terminal to rip off the Federal government.
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Freight Monitor

President Buhari to commission multi-billion naira Dala Inland dry port Monday –Ahmad Rabiu

The Eyewitness reporter
All is set for the commissioning of the Dala International inland dry port on Monday 31st January 2023 by President Muhammad Buhari at Zawachiki in Kumbotso local government area of Kano state.
The Managing Director of the international inland dry port Ahmad Rabiu, stated this while addressing newsmen on the preparation for the inauguration of the port at its headquarters in Kano.
Ahmad Rabiu, who was joined by the chairman of the inland dry port, Alhaji Abubakar Sahabu Bawuro, said its the first international inland dry port where cargoes will go anywhere in the world from Kano state without follow up to any sea ports across Nigeria.
Ahmad Rabiu told newsmen that the federal government under President Muhammad Buhari has given all the support required for the take-up, noting that they have met the requirement on infrastructure and other critical amenities.
The MD said the stacking area has the capacity of containing 20 thousand units of containers before moving anywhere at any time, noting that the area covers six hectares of land and the management is willing to add more.
According to Ahmad Rabiu, all the requirements needed for clearance by businessmen, and customs duty will be done right from Kano without follow-up to any seaport in Nigeria.
On his part, the chairman of Dala Inland Dry Port, Alhaji Abubakar Sahabu Bawuro said the management of the port is prepared technically, and physically with interested partners and is going to boost businesses in Kano, Nigeria and Africa in general and urged members of the press to partner with the management in ensuring efficiency, emphasizing that the place is not a monument but a business venture.
The chairman said Dala Inland Dry Port is now a solution to the problems brought about by the seaports and they will introduce cargo tracking and door-to-door delivery of goods and services.
He said the success of the inland dry port is a joint venture between the state government, the business community, regulatory agencies and the Federal Government of Nigeria and to make business in Kano and its neighborhood more competitive.
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Freight Monitor

CRFFN rejects re-appointment bid of ousted Sam Nwakohu

Ousted CRFFN Registrar, Nwakohu
— appoints Uromta as Acting Registrar
—-shops for substantive Registrar.
The Eyewitness reporter
The Council for the Registration of Freight forwarding Practice in Nigeria (CRFFN) has thrown out the re-election bid of the outgoing Registrar of the Council, Sam Nwakohu.
In an emergency meeting of the council Thursday at its Abuja liaison office, the Council appointed Mrs. Chinyere Uromta, the Director of Regulations and Enforcement, as an acting Registrar pending the time a substantive registrar will be appointed.
The decision of the council to reject the reelection bid of the ousted Registrar was based on the recommendations of its ad hoc committee to look into the request of Nwakohu for a second term tenure.
The outgoing registrar, last year, at the December meeting of the council, submitted a letter, requesting to be considered for a second term shot at the lucrative position.
Consequently, the Chairman of the Council, Alhaji Abubakar Tsanni set up an ad-hoc committee, headed by Efeanyi Isikaku, to look into the request of Nwakohu and submit its report in two weeks.
“Following the completion of its assignment and submission of its report, the council, therefore, convened today (Thursday)in Abuja to deliberate on the next line of action to be taken in respect of the committee’s recommendations.
” The AdHoc committee made important recommendations with reference to the provisions of Public Service Rules as well as the council’s Act.
“The committee however, recommended that in order to avoid a vacuum after the expiration of the Registrar’s tenure, the council shall start making arrangements for a handover of the Registrar’s office to the most senior management staff of the council.
“Similarly, the committee also recommended that the Appointment Promotion and Discipline committee of the council be directed to start making preparations for reappointment or appointment of substantive Registrar”  Muftahu Ya’u, the chairman Committee on Media and Publicity of the governing council,  declared in a statement he sent to our reporter.
 “Finally, the council’s chairman soon after the adoption, approval, and ratification of the committee’s recommendations by members of the council directed the followings:
that arrangement for the Registrar’s handover to Mrs. Chinyere Uromta  Director, Regulations and Enforcement on 31st of January 2023.
“That committee on Appointment Promotion and Discipline go ahead to start preparations for reappointment/appointment of a new Registrar” the head of media and publicity of the council concluded.
It could be recalled that soon after Nwakohu made his ambition known to succeed himself as the Registrar of the council, he went on a lobbying spree, trying to woo the council members to buy into his ambition.
But sources close to the council whispered to our reporter that the second term bid of Nwakohu was dead on arrival due to lots of baggage he carries.
“There was no way he could have succeeded in his obnoxious bid to succeed himself.
Firstly, it was a general consensus among the freight forwarding confraternity that Nwakohu failed woefully as the registrar.
“He is incompetent, arrogant and someone not ready to learn,” a highly placed source said.
“Also, several allegations of financial sleaze against him have not been cleared.
“Similarly, the council members were not happy at the way Nwakohu handled the purchase of the CRFFN Abuja liaison office which cost they felt was inflated.
“All these and other uncharitable behavior of the outgoing registrar are enough reasons not to reappoint him as the Council registrar” the source claimed.
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Freight Monitor

CRFFN outgoing Registrar, Sam Nwakohu, lobbies Council for second term in office

— as he bows out in February.
—-Freight forwarders reject his comeback bid
The Eyewitness reporter
The outgoing Registrar of the Council for the Registration of Freight Forwarding practice in Nigeria (CRFFN), Samuel Nwakohu, is making last minutes efforts to get a second term tenure in office as the head of the freight forwarding regulatory body.
The outgoing Registrar, who was appointed in February 2019, will exit the council in February 2023 after four years in office.
Our reporter gathered exclusively that Nwakohu was not in a hurry to leave office as he has written to the governing council of the regulatory body about his intention to apply for a second term tenure.
At the December meeting of the council in Abuja, the application letter of the outgoing registrar for a second term tenure was read and a committee was raised to look into his request to return.
Confirming the development, Kayode Farinto, a member of the ad-hoc committee on the second term bid of Nwakohu, said the committee was given two weeks to submit its findings to the council which has the statutory rights to make recommendations on the bid of the Registrar to the Minister of Transportation, Engr Muazu Sambo.
However, our reporter gathered that Sam Nwakohu has embarked on intense lobbying of the committee members and other notable stakeholders in the industry in a bid to clinch the second term tenure.
Kayode Farinto however denied knowledge of any lobby tactics of the outgoing Registrar.
‘I am not aware if he is lobbying or not but what I know is that his letter intimating the council on his second term bid was read at our last council meeting where a committee was raised to look into the issue” he said.
It was gathered that the committee had its first meeting Tuesday, January 10th, 2023 at Rockview Hotel, Apapa Lagos where members deliberated on the chances of Nwakohu.
Meanwhile, there was generally a foul mood among freight forwarders against the outgoing Registrar.
They unanimously dismissed the second-term bid of Nwakohu as obscene, unwarranted and an insult to the collective psyche of freight forwarders given what they all agreed was his unmitigated failure.
“He doesn’t merit a second term in office as the registrar of CRFFN. His tenure was an unmitigated disaster. He is arrogant. He doesn’t relate well with the freight forwarders. He is quick to anger. He distanced himself from his immediate constituency” Alhaji Mukaila Abdulaziz declared.
“We need someone who is ready to learn, we need someone who listens to correction, and suggestions without taking offence.
”Personally, I do not want to see him (Sam Nwakohu) return as the Registrar of CRFFN” the ANLCA scribe concluded.
Mr Ojo Akintoye, the ANLCA chapter chairman of the Tin Can Island port spoke in a similar manner.
When he was asked if the outgoing Registrar deserves a return ticket to the office, Akintoye thundered “No, absolutely no”
“What has he achieved in the four years he was there as the Registrar? Absolutely nothing. His impact was not felt in the industry. The industry didn’t feel the impact of the CRFFN during his tenure. Others should be given a chance to prove their mettle” he said.
Prince Olayiwola Shittu, the immediate past President of ANLCA declined to comment, tactically evading the assessment of the outgoing Registrar.
”I don’t want to discuss CRFFN. It is not worth it.  Since the time I resigned from the council, the body has lost direction. It has lost its focus. It has become a means of making money for some people.
”Could you imagine that some people, since 2007 when the council started, have been in the council, recycling themselves to make money?
Since the council has lost focus, I have equally lost interest in its affairs” the ANLCA chieftain declared.
Similarly, Prince Ozo Chukurah, the Vice Chairman of ANLCA BOT evaded the request to assess the performance of the outgoing Registrar  because” I am no longer in the council”
But indication is rife that the desperate bid of Sam Nwakohu to retain his plum job may not materialise as he was said to have stepped on many toes through what angry stakeholders described as his arrogant posture on issues and little or no knowledge of the industry he is meant to regulate.
This is coupled with the litany of allegations of financial impropriety that dogged his tenure.
He was said to have lived a flamboyant life on the resources of the CRFFN to the chagrin of the council members, some of whom have vowed to block his chances of coming back as the Registrar.
Mr Nwohohu is believed to have proceeded on his terminal leave in December prior to his final disengagement in February 2023 as the de facto Registrar
Sources said his many “sins” he committed in the course of his tenure will likely hurt his chances of coming back.
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