The Minister of Transport, Sen. Idris Umar has called on the stakeholders to use their wealth of experience in the maritime sector to help in nation building at both national and international levels as a result of the trainings acquired across the globe.
He said this will help to propagate a level of national economic utility interest in conformity with the transformation agenda of the present administration in the country.
Speaking through the Special Assistant (SA) to the Minister on Marine Operations, Alhaji Dikko Tahir Bala, he added that the Federal Government was ready to collaborate with any organisation in the maritime sector that will help in controlling smuggling and enhance realisation of 48 hours cargo clearance target which will facilitate and accelerate the nation’s international trade.
The Minister said “May I use this medium to encourage you to harness your wealth of experience in the maritime in nation building at national or international level to propagate the level of national economic utility interest in consonance with the transformation agenda of the present administration”.
The Minister said this at the Both Anniversary celebration and official commissioning of the Nigerian Licensed Customs Agents (ANLCA) in Lagos, last week.
Mr. Niyi Oyewole, the Senior Special Assistant (SSA) to the president on maritime while reading the speech, of the Vice President, Arc. Namadi Sambo, called the attention of Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) to recognise and regulate the activities of the chandlers which he said would provide income for the country and generate employment for the youth of the country.
Mr. Oyewole, who described chandelling as a lucrative venture, called on the service to make sure that their activities are brought into focus properly.
“I will also call attention to another area needing attention to recognise and regulate the activities of the chandlers.
“It is an area where the nation can make money also and provide enormous employment opportunity for our youth,” he stated.
Speaking earlier, the Comptroller of Customs (CGC), Alhaji Abdulahi Dikko Inde in response to the request of the National President of ANLCA for the training of the members of the association, granted the request which according to the president will commence next month at the Customs Training College, Ikeja.
Dikko said, “In line with the request made by the president of ANLCA, I have approved that such training program be extended to Customs Licensed Agents to train alongside the customs officers.”
The CGC who said he held a meeting with his men and officers on Thursday to appreciate them for a job well done also enjoined them not to rest on their oars even as he said that the service had a target of between 1.1 to 1.5 trillion naira for the year, 2014.
The National president of ANLCA, Prince Olayiwola Shittu while speaking said the feat of building the national secretariat was not achieved by him alone but through a collective efforts of members of the association who all gave a nod that it should be built.
Speaking on the local content development, the ANLCA president said that if government should stop issuing licenses to Lebanese, Indians who take up the jobs of indigenous people, then the local content would work.
Citing the auto policy as an example, he said it was lopsided to favour some people thereby creating private monopoly meanwhile, same people will still be given license to clear the goods allowed into the country.
“Help us tell the government not to give licenses to Lebanese and Indians to take over the jobs of indigenous people. That is when local content will work. Look at the auto policy that the government has put in place, it is lopsided to favour some people, creating private monopoly and the same people will still be given license to clear the one that s allowed to come. That is not the way to do local content,” he said.
He added that ANLCA has presence in all the zones across the country including Abuja where he said the association had acquired a 20 acre land which when completed, will serve as both school and customs brokers’ academy.
“We have already acquired a 20 acre land in Abuja that will serve both as school and our custom brokers’ academy. That is what we have gotten for now, so we have our presence in Abuja.”