ANLCA VP Dr. Kayode Colin Farinto presenting the opening speech at the NEC meeting.
Story by Dili Utomi.
There were commendations as some members of the Association of Nigerian Licensed Customs Agents (ANLCA) gathered on Monday the 6th of September at the conference room of the Dikko Inde house, the secretariat of the Association at Amuwo Odofin, Lagos to have its National Executive Council meeting.
The meeting which was chaired by the Vice President of the Association, Dr Kayode Colin Farinto in the absence of the President has a full constitutional backing. The meeting started at about 12.00pm and after the initial protocols, the meeting proper kicked off.
Members watching keenly as the programme unfolds.
The Vice President who read the opening speech started with a quote from Billy Taylor thus ” The true mark of a leader is the willingness to stick with a bold course of action, an unconventional business strategy, a unique product- development roadmap, a controversial marketing campaign- even as the rest of the world wonders why you are not marching in step with the status quo. In other words, real leaders are happy to zig while others zag and they understand that in an area of hyper-competition and non-stop disruption, the only way to stand from the rest of the crowd is to stand for something special'”.
He noted that the above quotation was necessary to buttress the need for this particular set of the National Executive Council to stick to ANLCA’s Constitution. He also however highlighted the point that the Constitution was deliberately reviewed at the last Annual General Meeting in Owerri to give every administration both at the chapter and national level, the seemless governance devoid of any rancour and that a single term tenure for all the executive offices in ANLCA was agreed upon.
Dr. Farinto also decried the new trend of foreigners taking over the Customs Brokerage which ought to be left for Nigerians and that their businesses are not being protected by the government. On the allegation that the executive members of the Association are obstructing the Nigeria Customs Service from carrying out the 100% physical examination of cargoes, Dr. Farinto called the allegation spurious noting that the body will engage the house committee on the Customs in due course.
The VP, centre flanked to his left by the NS, Mr. Abdullahi and on his right by the NT, madam Muse.
He also spoke on the need for members to engage the federal government in order to tap into the 1.3 billion people market and a $3.4 trillion worth economic blocs of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfFCTA). On the challenges faced by freight forwarders, Dr. Farinto noted that the logistics performance index rating of Nigeria has been poor for six years now and that the predictability of the Customs process is lacking.
He also touched on the reconciliation of members especially the need to look into the apology letter written by Mr. Temitope Akindele with a consideration to forgive and recall him.
He called on the government to grant some level of palliatives to the terminal operators in order for them to cope with the inflationary trend and for costs not to be jacked up.
Dr. Farinto also chided members to get professionalised by taking up any of the Council for the Registration of Freight Forwarders in Nigeria’s (CRRFN) educational programmes. On the controversial collection of the Practitioners Operating Fee, the Vice President noted that efforts have made the Council to approve that some percentages will be paid back to the declarant as incentives. Dr. Farinto also declared that the Lagos State Government has introduced the temporary vehicles tag (TVT) for imported Tokunbo vehicles which allows one to use the vehicle for a month before properregistration and that the wharf landing fee has been incorporated into this tag.
The minute of the last meeting was read by the national secretary of the Association, Mr. Babatunde Abdullahi as he detailed all the discussions and agreement reached at the last Emergency National Executive Council meeting at the Marriots Hotels, Ikeja.
Mrs.Funmi Folorunsho of the National Action Committee of the AfFCTA spoke on the programmes of the government as regards AfFCTA, she advocates for the CRFFN to have a desk in each sectorial association’s headquarters in order to be able to articulate their needs and aspirations and to integrate these in the programmes of AfFCTA. She says that Freight Forwarders should ask the pertinent question of why will the Nigerian export not grow? She pleaded with the executive of ANLCA to set up an AfFCTA pressure group.
Also a representative of the CRRFN, Mrs. Florence Ekpu also highlighted the educational programmes of the Council and warned that these programmes will help in professionalising the practice of Freight Forwarding and will prevent a situation where those that are not professionals are barred from engaging in the profession. She itemised the various certificate, executive and diploma programmes ran in conjunction with some select Universities within the country.
Members in a group photograph after the event.
One of the highlights of the occasion was the presentation of copies of the amended Supreme Constitution of ANLCA; another highlight was the stepping forward by Mr. Temitope Akindele to present with his team a verbal apology following his earlier written apology. Mr. Akindele’s apology was reviewed by members and at the end of the discussion on the matter, it was agreed that Mr. Akindele be forgiven with a caveat that he withdraws as a plaintiff in the case involving an aggrieved faction of the Association and the National Executive Council at a Badagry court.
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