Founder of the National Association of Government Approved Freight Forwarders [NAGAFF], Dr. Boniface Okechukwu Aniebonam, has called on the elders of the Association of Nigerian Customs Licensed Agents [ANLCA] to allow the association to grow, by leaving the scene when the ovation is loud.
. Dr. Aniebonam made this call at the inauguration of the Maritime Journalists Association of Nigeria [MAJAN] Secretariat on Friday in Lagos.
The NAGAFF founder who expressed sadness over the rift in the association noted that as the first and foremost licensed freight agents’ association, ANLCA should not be having the present crisis it is engrossed in now.
“ I am not happy at the problem our sister association, ANLCA is having presently”,he said, adding that NAGAFF cannot do without ANLCA and ANLCA cannot do without NAGAFF, stressing that there are so many issues bedeviling the industry that both organizations must collaborate to tackle. He further observed that the present problem in ANLCA is affecting the entire maritime eco-system.
His words,“If we continue with what is happening, value is continuously eroded,not only that we are not building capacity, the port function is not working well. And therefore, I will solicit your intervention. All these elders in ANLCA should leave ANLCA alone, so that these young freight forwarders can move on and do things on their own”
He upbraided the Board of Trustees ( BOT) of ANLCA for orchestrating the present crisis, noting that the duty of the BOT revolves around assets and liabilities of the association ,and wondered who may have given them the sweeping powers contrary to the constitution of the association.
Dr. Aniebonam noted that the constitution of ANLCA is not different from constitutions of other associations.
The NAGAFF founder also called on the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) to provide an avenue to properly educate the freight forwarders on narcotics, saying that you cannot raise alarm on what you don’t know.
He called on journalists to dwell more on investigative journalism as there are many issues in the industry that need to be reported.
Earlier in his welcome speech ,the president of the Maritime Journalists Association of Nigeria ( MAJAN), Mr.Ray Ugochukwu, gave a brief history of how MAJAN got to its present enviable state.
He thanked the NAGAFF leadership for all their support to the association, as he recounts the humble beginning of the association.
His words,” From under the mango tree on the permission of the National Association of Government Approved Freighted Forwarders NAGAFF, MAJAN was founded and we moved to Stephanie’s night club on this street Calcutta crescent .The news of our habiting there flickered into Dr Aniebonam’s ears and he had to send for me in his office. He queried why we should be wasting money in a night club premises when NAGAFF was big enough to accommodate us and all our activities. He immediately took me to the apartment we stayed till we got this place,”he said.
The MAJAN President also expressed his gratitude to agencies like the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), Nigerian Shippers’ Council ( NSC), and the Standard Organization of Nigeria ( SON), amongst others
He noted that there are still lots of work to be done in the new Secretariat to put it in good shape.
“More works still needs to be done to bring it to a very conducive level for journalistic operations. We still lack a lot of facilities which I believe with your support ,we will get there,” he Said.
The MAJAN president stated that the secretariat will contain so many facilities, some of which include ultra- modern studio for both video and audio recordings for our internal operations and commercial purposes. Mr. Ugochukwu noted that the journey to the present state of the association has been fraught with challenges, but with the help of God and commitment by members, we were able to overcome.
“As an association, we have had our challenges like any other group, but we thank God we surmounted them. It is pertinent to point out here that MAJAN doors are wide open to any well meaning journalist who desires to join or rejoin us ” he said.
The high points of the occasion were the honouring of Dr. Boniface Aniebonam with the award of “Freight Forwarder General of the Maritime Industry,”and the tour of the massive secretariat by the guests. Goodwill messages came from Alhaji Babatunde Mukaila, the secretary of ANLCA, princess Bola Muse and the representative of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency[NDLEA], Mr. Samuel Mogaji, who represented the area commander.