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Freight Monitor

ANLCA crisis festers as BOT sacks Tony Iju- led NECOM

ANLCA secretariat, the bone of contention


—– Farinto kicks, denies parallel EXCO
—-Eastern Zone rejects interim arrangement

The Eyewitness reporter

There seems not to be an end to the malignant crisis rocking the Association of Nigerian Licensed Customs Agents (ANLCA) as the acclaimed oldest freight forwarding association has once again been plugged into another fresh crisis.
This followed the takeover of the secretariat and the sacking of the Tony Iju- led  National Executive by the Board of trustees (BOT).
The fragile peace accord between the two warring factions fighting for the soul of the association broke down which led to renewed hostility.
The Taiwo Mustapha- led BOT who, sacked the NECOM, accused the dissolved exco of the sit-tight syndrome, saying the tenure of the dissolved executive members expired on 16th April 2022.
Speaking at the association’s secretariat, the Board of Trustees chairman, Taiwo Mustapha, however, announced an interim management team led by Pius Ujubonu.According to Mustapha, the tenure of the dissolved executive committee of the association expired on the 16th of April, 2022 and has, therefore, created a vacuum in the association’s leadership.

“We have been on this for the last four years and it’s pathetic that we have stayed so long on it.

“From today, (Wednesday), I want to say on behalf of board members, that the association shall be well.

” Whatever happens to the association lies with the BoT. We decide to take it easy going through all peaceful moves for peace to return to ANLCA but to no avail.”

“The climax of it was when the secretariat was locked for five weeks. We spoke and we met with the Assistant Inspector General of Police (AIG) and the Commissioner of Police.

” The CP appointed the Area commander to midwife a truce and we are prepared for it, in fact, we are ready to shift ground for a win-win but they reneged from their side.

“Now, I have pronounced that the National Executive Council of the association has remained dissolved and the Owerri convention where the association’s constitution was purportedly amended remains null and void.

“The BoT is empowered to run the association for six months but we will create an interim committee for one month or as at when time permits so that they can conduct an election for the new executive.”

The interim executive as announced by the BoT chairman is, Pius Ujobonu as acting president; Jamiu Adeyinka as acting Vice president and Joe Sanni as acting secretary.

Others are, “Francis Ituah as acting publicity Secretary; Waheed Gbadamosi as acting Financial Secretary and Alhaji Usman as the acting Treasurer of the association.

However, Kayode Farinto, the Acting President in the dissolved NECOM, dismissed the purported dissolution.
He denied any existing parallel executives in the association.
He claimed that the alleged takeover of the secretariat was done in the absence of the NECOM members whom he claimed were away on a courtesy visit to the Lekki seaport.
Farinto described the activities that took place at the national secretariat as the handiwork of expelled members who refused to leave after being expelled by the National Executives Committee (NEC).
The Acting National President also bemoaned the attitude of the commissioner of Police in Lagos state to the crisis rocking the association, noting that the commissioner is culpable and needs to explain his role in the association crisis.
“What you are seeing in ANLCA is political shenanigans by cantankerous old men who refused to leave the association after being expelled.  These are expelled members of our former board, they are no more members of ANLCA for now and unfortunately, we were on national assignment when we learnt that they have encroached into the national secretariat and forcefully taken over the secretariat, breaking the padlocks and keys.
“The interesting thing is that we have Police on guard in that place, so we want to know the reason, we want to know whether the police are culpable because this is a surprise to me.
“But there is nothing to worry about, the expelled members, they are not members of ANLCA and it is not me that expelled them,  it was NEC, I don’t know why a part of the body will say it doesn’t belong to the body.
”It’s unfortunate that the West has been like this, but I can assure you that this will be the last war that will root out these people who refuse to leave.
“A man of 75years parading himself as a member of the board, what’s he looking for, he has spent 12 years on the board as at the time his tenure expired, but tomorrow(today) we are taking over our secretariat back.”
Similarly, the Association of Nigerian Licensed Customs Agents (ANLCA) Eastern Zone has allegedly condemned the takeover of the secretariat by Mustapha-led BOT while dissociating itself from the action.
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Freight Monitor

Prince Nwokeabia rallies support for Comptroller Ukpanah, CAC Enugu/Anambra/Ebonyi\command, as she assumes office 

Prince Nwokeabia,
 The Eyewitness Reporter
The Chairman of the Enugu chapter of the Association of  Nigerian Licensed Customs Agents (ANLCA), Prince Alex Nwokeabia, has rallied the support of his members and other stakeholders in the chapter for the new Customs Area Controller of  Enugu/Anambra/Ebonyi Area Command, Compt. Comfort Senas Ukpanah as she assumed duty in the command.
In his congratulatory message to the new controller, Prince Nwokeabia, while welcoming Comptroller Ukpanah to the Enugu Customs Command, expressed confidence in the capacity of the new CAC to further drive the command to new heights of success.
The freight forwarder, who described the new CAC as a thoroughbred Customs officer who rose through the rank, believed that Comptroller Ukpanah would consolidate and surpass the achievements so far recorded in the command.
Prince Nwokeabia, while congratulating the new CAC on her deployment to the command, assured her of the readiness of the members of the Enugu ANLCA to support and work for the success of her tenure.
”I, Prince Alex Nwokeabia, on behalf of all the members of the Association of Nigerian Licensed Customs Agents, Enugu Chapter, welcome our new Area Controller,  Comptroller Comfort Senas Ukpanah, to her new post and wish her a successful tenure.
“The Enugu ANLCA wishes to assure her of our unflinching support and readiness to work with her and her team to ensure the successful implementation of her mandate” the ANLCA Chieftain declared.
Comptroller Ukpanah assumed office as the new Customs Area Controller of Enugu/Anambra/Ebonyi Area Command on Friday 15th September, 2023.

 She took over from Comptroller AM Adegbite who was re-deployed to Edo/Delta Area Command.

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Freight Monitor

Customs offers hands of fellowship to new ANLCA leadership , as Adeniyi congratulates Nwokeoji on his election

The Eyewitness Reporter
The Acting Comptroller General of Nigeria Customs Service, Adewale Adeniyi, has expressed the willingness of the Service to collaborate with the new leadership of the Association of Nigerian Licensed Customs Agents (ANLCA) under the leadership of Emenike Nwokeoji, in a bid to advance the customs brokerage sector and promote the interests of customs agents throughout Nigeria.
In his congratulatory message to the new ANLCA president, Adeniyi said his election was a reflection of the confidence the members of the association have in him.
While lauding the noble role that members of the Customs Consultative Council played in brokering peace in the war-torn association which eventually led to the conduct of a peaceful election, the customs boss said he was eagerly waiting for a productive partnership with the association.
Adeniyi however expressed confidence that Mr. Nwokeoji will provide solid and visionary leadership to ANLCA while working closely with the Nigeria Customs Service to enhance the collaboration between the two organizations.
“On behalf of the officers and men of the Nigeria Customs Service, the Acting Comptroller General of Customs, Bashir Adewale Adeniyi congratulates Mr Emenike Nwokeoji on his election as the National President of the Association of Nigeria Licensed Customs Agents (ANLCA)”
After five years of bickering and bitter rivalry that polarised the oldest freight forwarding group in Nigeria into factions, including several botched attempts to broker a truce, the much elusive peace eventually located the troubled association on September 7th, 2023, when an election, which outcome was accepted by all the factions, was held and Nwokeoji emerged as the president of the unified ANLCA.
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Freight Monitor

Freight Forwarders threaten to shut down ports over alarming rate of extortions by maritime police.

Inspector-General of Police, Kayode Egbetokun
The Eyewitness Reporter
The freight forwarders plying their trade at the Lagos ports are currently in a restive mood over what they claimed was the barefaced extortions, harassment, and intimidation by the maritime police.
The aggrieved customs brokers, in their petition to the new Inspector-General of Police, Kayode Egbetokun, have therefore threatened to withdraw their services if the excesses of these police officers are not checked.
In a four-page protest letter signed by Alhaji Tanko Ibrahim, the National Coordinator of the 100 percent Compliance team of the National Association of Government Approved Freight Forwarders (NAGAFF),  addressed to the IGP and dated August 22, 2023, the irate customs brokers said the activities of these police officers have considerably impeded facilitation of trade.
In the petition, Tanko Ibrahim, who is also an elected member of the governing board of the Council for the Regulation of Freight Forwarding Practice in Nigeria (CRFFN), claimed these officers, in connivance with the shipping companies, indiscriminately stop and detain exited containers from the ports with the purpose of extorting money from the owners.
Tanko, who said these extortionist activities of the police were curtailed under the past administration of police IG due to the outcry of the oppressed freight forwarders, lamented that the menace has now resurgent with new vigour, as the police now carry out their extortions in the open.
“Since the advent of the new administration, the officers and men of the Maritime Police have not only resumed these activities but also even more daring.
“They do not only block the release of containers from shipping companies, but they also arrest and detain containers on the roads, and even allegedly go into fisticuffs with the officers of the Federal Operations Unit of the Nigerian Customs Service”
The petitioners however fingered one of the officers whom they said was daring and boastful of his nefarious activities.
“To compound and confound the matter, one of their officers, named Superintendent Kenneth  Uwakool, who has been at Kam Salem House for more than three years, when the rapprochement was reached during the last administration, is the unrepentant bagman, who openly boasts that he is a millionaire.
“He sits atop proceedings in the extortion business’ the petitioners declared.
In the petition, each copy of which was sent to President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, members of the National Assembly, and all the security agencies, Tanko Ibrahim, who ventilated the foul mood of the angry freight forwarders, claimed that the marauding police officers collect as high as N2m to N3m from their victims on each container before they let them go.
The petitioners wondered where were these officers when the Customs, in collaboration with other sister agencies, arrest containers with drugs, arms, and ammunition, accusing them of looking the other way while these illicit goods are being ferried away understand their noses.
He however appealed for prompt intervention of the new IGP in order to calm the frayed nerves of the harassed freight forwarders to starve off an impending showdown with the extortionist police officers.
“We, therefore, respectfully urge you, sir, to call the Maritime Police to order and save the ports from an imminent restiveness that may paralyze business activities and further cause economic loss to government revenue.
“We may have no option than to go on protest which may result in a possible shutdown of the seaports” the aggrieved freight forwarders threatened.
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