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Joe Sanni feeding fat on ANLCA crisis —-Prince Ozo Chukurah

Prince Ozo Chukwrah is one the most visible freight forwarders in the country and the Vice-Chairman of the Board of Trustees (BOT) of the Association of Nigerian Licensed Customs Agents(ANLCA).

He was at the forefront of the various peace efforts to resolve the protracted crisis which has bedeviled the association for almost five years now.

In this exclusive interview with our reporter, the ANLCA chieftain highlighted the latest peace moves by the BOT to end the lingering crisis and restore peace to the battle-weary association.

He however accused Joe Sanni, the former Senior Special Assistant(SSA) on Media and Publicity to Prince Olayiwola Shittu, the immediate past president of ANLCA, as the killjoy to all the various peace efforts in the association, accusing him of making merchandise of the crisis as he was continuously fanning the embers of discord through his inflammatory statements which he alleged were bare-faced lies to profit from the unfortunate situation.

  What is your reaction to reopening the ANLCA secretariat after it was shut for about two months following the unfortunate incident at Tin Can port where one person was killed?

That narration was totally wrong. The secretariat had been long closed before the incident t your referred to. The Police shut the secretariat over the petition they received that some people wanted to burn the place from the Western zone group. All efforts to dissuade the police from shutting down the place fell through. The police insisted that they will close it for security reasons. That was the reason the secretariat was shut.

Both warring groups went to the Lagos state commissioner of police. I led our team while Taiwo Mustapha led his team. There, the Commissioner of police expressed frustration at the seeming perpetuity of the crisis, saying he was tried. I made my own submission, saying that we too are tired because the matter is so simple. It was a matter between the two boards. The New board and the past board. The new board came and inherited the problems.

The NECOM was initially not part of the problem, but at a stage, they got the NECOM involved because they accused the NECOM of taking sides.

As I have earlier explained in my past interview, there were court cases that barred Tony Iju-led NECOM not to recognize the other party.

It was a court declaration and nobody contested or appealed against that judgment.

 Now that the Secretariat has been opened and handed to Tony Iju-led NECOM, what is your reaction? What is the way forward? Where does the association go from there?

Before I answer that question, let me conclude the analysis of our peace efforts before now.

The two groups went to the Commissioner of police where I told him that he has a legal department, and let the other party submit what they have as evidence of being in charge of the secretariat because they were then claiming they have taken over the secretariat when they appointed Pius Ejubomon as interim President while we still have Tony Iju as our President who is in charge.

I asked the police to investigate to find out which of the two contending boards is in charge, is it the one led by Taiwo Afolabi or the one led by Taiwo Mustapha?

That was where we left it with the police.

The Mustaha-led board was genuinely registered but no longer active as of August 26th, 2022 while the new board led by Dr. Afolabi came in on September 7th, 2022. These dates are very sacrosanct and germane to the issue on the ground. they are verifiable.

The Mustapha-led board ceases to be active in the status of the Corporate Affairs Commission(CAC) as at August 26th, 2022. While the new board led by Afolabi came in and issued a certificate on September 7th, 2022. with the names of the nine members of the board printed on the certificate.

This is what we asked the Police to investigate to determine which of the two boards is fake and genuine.

So the police took all legal steps to investigate and found out that the authentic board genuinely registered by the CAC is the one led by Dr. Taiwo Afolabi which is supporting the Tony Iju-led NECOM.

That is why they reopened the secretariat and handed it over to Tony Iju-led NECOM as a confirmation of the authenticity and genuineness of Afolabi-led BOT.

This action by the police has finally vindicated us and settled the issue of the legitimacy of our board.

To be sincere with you, everyone, including Mustapha, knows the truth, probably with the exception of one man, Joe Sanni.

 But why are still contesting the ownership of the secretariat with the authentic board?

All this while, Joe Sanni was the lawyer, the judge and the complainant. He has been the one who determines what to say, dishing out falsehood to the public.

I am sure he is feeding fat on this crisis, he is not losing anything. He is massively reaping from it otherwise who among these people is the enemy of Prince Ozo?

Sir Ernest Elochucku, whom I regard as the most intelligent freight forwarder in Nigeria, is my boss and friend. Dennis Okafor is the closest friend to my brother, Chief Mike Nwoko and a close friend to me.

Taye Oyeniyi is another close friend who once made me relinquish my hard-won victory in Tin Can which I later reclaimed with the support of others, including Dayo Aziz who supported me to become the first Igbo ANLCA chapter chairman in Tin Can.

They all also rallied around me when I contested for Zonal coordinator which I eventually won unopposed.


”We should all be concerned, especially those who are close to this man, about his state of sanity.

Is Joe Sanni normal and of sound mind?”

So who among these people is my enemy: none, not even Mustapha whom I have severally met in private to seek peace in ANLCA.

This is a new year, I plead and sue for peace, even if it means going down on my knees. I will do everything possible for us to achieve peace.

We should embrace peace and shun bitterness because time is fast running out.

I will make a proposal to our board and NECOM so that we can convene an AGM/NEC meeting where the suspension of some members could be reversed and they would be reabsorbed into the association for peace to reign.

Most of us in the elective positions in the association are on the final lap of our tenure. We need youths to come up and take over.

 Beyond rhetorics sir, what are the concrete steps the Dr. Afolabiled BOT is making to ensure a lasting peace and to placate the aggrieved party?

Only four people from the Mustapha group are qualified to recontest their positions and they are Dayo Aziz, Ernest Elochukwu, Taiwo Mustapha and Dennis Okafor who can join the nine members of the Taiwo Afolabi-led board. We need to amend the constitution to accommodate them. This should not be a problem because laws are made for man and not man for the law.

This is part of the peace efforts the board is willing to make to ensure that this crisis is resolved and lasting peace is restored back to the ANLCA.

Even these people I mentioned, some of them don’t have time for the association again because they are heavyweight. They don’t even have enough time for their numerous business interests. So we need to start to groom some capable youths to take over the leadership of the association.

The second aspect is we should allow all the actions and inactions of Tony Iju to pawn out. Every chapter where he conducted elections should be allowed to serve out its tenure.

Also, if we come together, the board will allow them to be part of the ASECO that will conduct the next elections.

They are too big to be ASECO members but they can send in their representatives to the association’s electoral body.

We run an inclusive government not by appointment but elections.

I was elected as a member of the BOT for six years and I have served out two years, the remaining four years. I am not willing to resign but intend to serve out my tenure.

I have supported all the past members who have served on the board, I never called for their sack or resignation before they served out their tenure, including Taye Oyeniyi, until this crisis started.

Therefore, I am begging everyone concerned to allow peace to reign in the association.

I am calling on all of them to an enlarged meeting where we all jaw-jaw and not war-war so that we can bring the association back to the path of peace.

No victor, no vanquished. We are all winners in this matter.

 What happens if the much sought-after peace is not achieved and you know that by April this year when the tenure of the incumbent NECOM expires and we know that constitutionally, the BOT will kick start the process of a new election, What happens if the other group does not back down?

Constitutionally, the BOT takes over the running of the NECOM for 90 days in case of a crisis. Has it not dawned on you now which is the authentic BOT?

Anyway, don’t let us count our chickens before they are hatched. We shall get to the bridge first before we attempt to cross it.

 What is going to happen to all the pending court cases? They are numerous and distractive.

I think all the court cases have been disposed off and all their judgments are in the favour of the parent NECOM and the Board. However, only one court case is pending and judgment will come in February. Even at that, the event has overtaken the court case because the man that was praying the court to be allowed to serve out his tenure of office has already served out his tenure. That was Aziz in the Seme chapter.

However, the court will still make its pronouncement despite this fact.

The one in Kano too has been decided.

We have had enough of delays and waste of time. It is time to come together and chart a new course for ANLCA. The crisis has led to lots of pain and loss of time and resources. So I bed all concerned to sheath their swords.

Another criminal case pending was the one where Tony Iju and his group were attacked. We shall look into that and prevail on the complainants to withdraw it if only the other group agrees to embrace peace.

What efforts is the current BOT making to forestall a reoccurrence of this crisis that has nearly torn ANLCA apart?

A. As far as I know, a crisis is part of human life. It is bound to happen where are two or more people, not to talk of a group like ANLCA. Crisis happens in families, countries, religious groups and professional or trade groups like ANLCA and political groups.

What is important is the ability to manage a crisis and navigate through the crisis. That does not mean there will be no crisis.

There are people who were created to foment trouble and create crises while some were born as peacemakers. Both groups will cohabit and coexists.

I wish to appeal to all well-meaning members of this association to prevail on Joe Sanni to stop his current efforts to further destabilize ANLCA despite all efforts to resolve the issues.

He has been fanning the ember of discord and disunity in the association through his inflammatory statement, and the spread of falsehoods, half-truths and outright lies.

He has been peddling lies the certificate of   Dr. Taiwo Afolabi-led BOT is fake. Yet he has not been able to take us to the police for forgery which is a criminal case.

He knew that the certificate is fake, why has he not written to the man whose signature was forged on the certificate to take legal action, yet he chooses to spread uncoordinated and incoherent narratives that do not add up to the discerning minds?

In another breath, he was telling the whole world the so-called fake certificate has been canceled and withdrawn by the CAC.

Is that not illogical and laughable? How can the CAC cancel a document that is supposed to be fake which they did not issue?

All these incoherent and illogical narratives of Joe Sanni are a sad reflection of his state of mind.

I enjoined the industry stakeholders to be circumspect and take time to analyse the logic behind some of these mendacious narratives this character is dishing out to the public on this matter.

A fake document cannot be canceled because it is already fake. And the man who is well versed in deciphering fake objects is supposed to write to the police without much ado for investigation.

I think by now we should all have been arrested because forgery is a criminal case.

But instead, the man chooses to spew out falsehood to the public.

We should all be concerned, especially those who are close to this man, about his state of sanity.

Is Joe Sanni normal and of sound mind?

I am as concerned as other true friends of this character called Sanni because he is doing more harm to the peace and progress of ANLCA through his illogical and incorrect utterances.

I appeal to those who are sponsoring him, those paying him for this hatchet job he is doing to desist from paying him if they truly love ANLCA.

He cannot contribute one Kobo in ANLCA, so he enjoying the crisis because he is feeding fat on it.

I am appealing to him to sheath his sword. This is not a personal war.

Enough is enough.

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Exclusive! Hope rises on take-off of proposed $3bn Badagry Deep Seaport as NPA, APMT resume discussion


The eyewitness reporter
Barring any last-minute hitches, the proposed Badagry deep seaport project may soon be on the stream as the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) has resumed discussions with the lead promoter of the multi-billion project, APM Terminals’ Global investment limited.
The investors/ promoters led a team to the NPA headquarters last Wednesday where they met with Mohammed Bello-Koko, the NPA Managing Director, and his management team.
The discussion centered on the take-off of the Badagry project which was conceived in 2016 to take the pressure off the overstretched Lagos ports.
The investment team was led by Martjin Van Dongen, the Global Head, Business Development of APM Terminals Global investment limited.
An elated Bello- Koko revealed that the two teams discussed how to optimize the potentials of the Badagry Deep Seaport.
“Discussions focused on optimizing the potentials of the upcoming Badagry Deep Seaports and other new ports as NPA Management intensifies action toward the vision to make Nigeria the maritime logistics hub for sustainable port services in Africa”
It could be recalled that the Federal government in 2016 conceived the idea of developing deep seaports in the country to position Nigeria as the hub of maritime activities in the West African sub-region.
The proposed deep sea ports project include Lekki deep sea port, which has already taken off, the Ondo deep sea port, Ibom Deep seaport and Badagry deep seaport.
While preparations for the takeoff of both the Ondo and Ibom sea ports projects are in top gear, that of the Badagry project was initially bogged down by technicalities and disagreement between the NPA and the promoters of the project.
The Badagry deep seaport project is an initiative of a consortium led by APM Terminals, Orlean Invest, Oando, Terminal Investment Ltd and Macquarie.
However, in November 2012, APM Terminals and its consortium partners announced plans to develop the Badagry deep seaport.
In 2020, the NPA disclosed that the promoters paid $500,000 as a commitment deposit into an escrow account to signify their commitment towards the port project.
However, the NPA kicked against the initial Outline Business Case for the port, which has been reviewed to include the suggestions of the Ports Authority.
The Federal Government however has approved a concession arrangement for the development of the Badagry deep seaport project over a period of 45 years.

The approval was finalised following a presentation by the Federal Ministry of Transportation at the Federal Executive Council (FEC)  during the last administration of President Mohammed Buhari.

According to officials, the port is expected to generate $53.6 billion in revenue over the 45 years concession period.

The proposed site of the project is located 55km west of Apapa and the port of Lagos, along the 55km long Lagos-Badagry Expressway, which is being upgraded from a four-lane to a ten-lane expressway.

The port is expected to have an annual throughput capacity of 1.8 million Twenty-foot Equivalent Units (TEUs).

The proposal for the project was announced in 2012. Feasibility studies have been completed and construction works are yet to start.

The project will be implemented in four phases, with the overall project cost estimated to range between $2 billion and $3 billion.

Also, it is expected that the new port will primarily ease pressure on the existing ports of Lagos, Apapa and Tin-Can Ports, which handle approximately 85 percent of the country’s non-oil throughput.

It will further alleviate the burden on the country’s existing ports, which are on the verge of exceeding their cargo handling capacities, and address the country’s annual container traffic, which is expected to grow to 10 million Twenty-foot Equivalent Units by 2030.

When fully built, the deep-water full-service port will be one of the largest in Africa with 7km of quay and 1,000 hectares (2,470 acres) of dedicated yard. It will include state-of-the-art facilities for container, bulk, liquid bulk, Ro/Ro and general cargo as well as oil and gas operations support and a barge terminal.

Plans for the adjoining Badagry Free Trade Zone will include a power plant, oil refinery, industrial park and warehousing and Inland Container Deport functions.

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Jamoh, Bello- Koko, serial award winners, bag National Productivity merit awards

Bello-Koko, Jamoh, NPOM award winners
 The eyewitness reporter

The Director General of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) Dr. Bashir Yusuf Jamoh, is gradually turning into a serial award winner as he has landed yet another plaque of honour from the federal government.

Not left in the harvest of awards which was a reflection of their value-addition in their various endeavours is Mohammed Bello-Koko, the Managing Director of the Nigerian Ports Authority(NPA) who is also a recipient of the National Productivity Diadem and a fellow serial awards winner.
Added to the already crowded roll call of honours of Jamoh is the National Productivity Merit Award conferred on him by the Federal Ministry of Labour and Productivity to recognize the invaluable contributions of the NIMASA DG to the development of the maritime industry.
To underscore his sterling leadership qualities as the DG of NIMASA and his roles in the current revolutionary trend in the maritime industry, the federal government nominated Dr Jamoh as a recipient of the 2021 National Productivity Order of Merit, NPOM, Award.
In a letter of the award signed by Dr Nasir Olaitan Raji-Mustapha, the Director General/CEO of the National Productivity Centre, Abuja, there are five categories of the awards.
Jamoh was listed among the 35 recipients under the category of 2021 Individual Awardees while Bello-Koko was listed among the 36 recipients under the category of 2022 Individual Awardees.
To share the limelight with Jamoh in this same category of the award is the Executive Director, Finance and Administration of the Agency, Hon. Chudi Offodile, while the Permanent Secretary Federal Ministry of Transportation, Dr Magdalene Ajani will share from the euphoria with Bello-Koko under the same category of  2022 recipients of the award.
The official conferment ceremony is scheduled for Monday, June 5, 2023.

An excited Jamoh expressed appreciation to the Federal Government, noting that it is a call to greater service to our Fatherland.“I am spurred by this award, particularly as it is coming from the Federal Ministry of Labour and Productivity, which underscores the ministry’s role in ensuring reward for hard work and productivity in public service”

“Let me also use this opportunity to dedicate the award to the industry’s stakeholders; external and internal, as they have made our work easier as an administration.

“We will continue to strive to make the maritime sector a viable economic driver, especially with the Blue Economy mantra, which is critical to the sustainability of the maritime sector”, Jamoh said.

Commenting the on the selection of the Permanent Secretary of the Federal Ministry of Transportation, Dr. Magdalene Ajani, the DG said it is a well-deserved honour, as she has remained a core professional and astute administrator in the coordination of activities in the Ministry and the Agencies under the supervision of the Ministry.

“I am not surprised by her selection, as she is an administrator par excellence and has remained resolute and professional in the discharge of her duties.

“Little wonder she is commonly referred to as the “Head Mistress” of the Ministry and the Maritime Sector”. I congratulate her on the well-deserving award.
In the same vein, the NPA MD expressed appreciation to the Federal government for the award and said that the recognition will further spur him on to put in his best in his resolve to turn the rich maritime potentials of the country into actualities.
”I will like to express my profound appreciation to the Federal Government for the honour of being conferred with the National Productivity Order of Merit Award.

”This conferment can only spur me and the entire team at the Nigerian Ports Authority whose commitment to exceptional performance culminated in this recognition, to continue pushing the limit and advancing the frontiers of trade facilitation.

”Imbued with the understanding that excellence is a moving target, I want to seize this moment to assure that we will not rest on our laurels in our resolve to turn our rich maritime potentials into actualities’, an elated Koko declared.

The National Productivity Order of Merit Award was instituted by the Federal Government of Nigeria to recognize and honour productive individuals and organizations in Nigeria in the year of the award for achievements made in the preceding years.

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Shippers’ Council bestows on APMT certificate of registration as regulated service provider at ports

Emmanuel Jime
The eyewitness reporter
AP Moller Terminals led by its Vice President, Mr. Martijn Van Dongen, has led a four-man delegation of the company to the management of the Shippers’Council to receive recognition as a certified regulated service provider at the Nigerian Ports.
This recognition was bestowed on the terminal operators during the visit of his top management staff to the economic regulatory agency at Apapa Friday.
Dongen said the essence of the visit was to strengthen collaboration with the Nigerian Shippers’ Council, the port’s economic regulator.
APMT received its certificate to operate as a regulated service provider during the visit.
Chinenye Deinde, the Legal Adviser and Head of Corporate Affairs of APMT also called on NSC to pursue the National Transport Commission (NTC) Bill, stating that it has the potential to sanitize the maritime sector.
In his response, the Executive Secretary and Chief Executive Officer of NSC, Rt. Honourable Emmanuel Jime said that the Shippers’ Council is working on the review of its enabling Act which he believes will strengthen the agency in its role as port economic regulator.
According to him, the Federal Government is committed to making Nigeria an investment haven for foreign investors while encouraging local entrepreneurs to be creative in growing the economy.
“The strategic location of this country on the African continent makes it a trigger for investments”, the NSC ES/CEO concluded.
Mr. Dongen was accompanied on the visit by Mr. Klaus Holm Laursen, Head of Joint Ventures, Africa and Europe, Mrs. Chinenye Deinde, Legal Adviser & Head, Corporate Affairs, APMT as well as Mr. Frederick Klinke, MD, APMT Nigeria.
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