…As Shittu, Elochukwu, Oyeniyi, Peter Obi, Others Converge
…Affirms ANLCA as only Relevant Association in Cargo Clearance
By DAPO OLAWUNI
Heavyweights in the Association of Nigerian Licensed Customs Agents (ANLCA) including its two former Presidents; Prince Olayiwola Shittu, Sir Earnest Elochukwu, two of its Patrons, Chief Peter Obi and Prince Taiye Oyeniyi, Chairman Board of Trustees (BOT) Alhaji Taiwo Mustapha and several others on Thursday converged at the national secretariat in Amuwo Odofin Lagos for a leadership retreat organised for the newly elected National Executive Committee (NECOM) members and other appointed officials of the association.
The ANLCA heavyweights took turns to address the NECOM amd appointed officials on the need to ensure that the newly found peace in the association is allowed to thrive and to preach unity among members..
National President of ANLCA, Mr Emenike Nwokeoji noted that the job they were elected to do in the NECOM is not a one man’s job, it requires all hands to be on deck in order to achieve desired objectives.
Speaking on the purpose of the leadership retreat, he said the purpose is to bring appointees and newly elected members abreast of their responsibilities.
“Sometimes when you appoint people from the National, they assume some powers more than what the Constitution allows them to. This retreat is to let them know that there are hierarchies in the course of executing their assignment.
“Our expectation is that we want to maintain presence in every aspect of this job, Shipping companies, terminal operators, customs and other security agencies.
“We are not appointing these officials to go and be overlords, they are not going into the port to line their pockets or lord things over the customs, they are to complement efforts of the chapters and give us reports” he said
While addressing the members, former ANLCA President, Sir Ernest Elochukwu warned that elections are over and their is no victor no vanquish.
He charged the members to avoid creating caucuses within ANLCA, saying that this would only create problems.
While reiterating the hierarchy in ANLCA, he warned appointees not to usurp the roles of elected officials.
“The appointees and elected officials must preach the gospel of unity and make ANLCA the focal point for interaction in cargo clearance business.
“ANLCA is the only association in the maritime industry, any other one is a personal venture, this is why ANLCA would always survive any situation, if the association can survive the last five years crisis, it can survive every other thing” he said
Sir Elochukwu commended President Emenike on appointment of officials, saying that the appointment cuts across board and reflected the restoration of peace in the association.
“The story of the election has been forgotten, ANLCA is one and we are moving the industry forward.
“For me, a new dawn is here in ANLCA and we have seen it from the action of the President that he is working for the unification of ANLCA. We all have a role to play, and it is our own best interest for ANLCA to thrive” he said
Also speaking, ANLCA Patron, Chief Peter Obi affirmed that the association back to its winning ways, urging all other freight forwarding associations to queue up behind ANLCA as an umbrella body.
“There is a new ANLCA and it has come to stay, this is an umbrella body and we have taken back our position, every other thing you see happening outside there is not an association, everyone of them have to queue up under ANLCA.
“My message to all our members is that we need cooperation, we have a very good President, a gentleman, the job is not a bed of roses, we have destroyed ANLCA for five years and it would take us time to rebuild it, this is why all hands must be on deck to reclaim our past glory. There is no victor no vanquish.
“I have paid my dues in ANLCA and i have the interest of the association at heart. Right now, our members are suffering, and this association is the only umbrella covering everyone going into the port to do any kind of work called freight forwarding” he said
Peter Obi urged the NECOM and appointed officials to embrace members outside who are yet to join the moving train
“It is you people that would call those outside for them to come back, those people you think you have defeated, the way you approach them or talk to them would bring them back.
Let us be talking about peace and how to unite this association” he said
On his part, another Patron of the association, Prince Taiye Oyeniyi urged anyone still nursing grievances from the five years crisis or pains from the elections, to join hands with the NECOM in order to rebuild the association.
“I thank God for today and I have assured the President that anytime he needs people like us, we would oblige him, whatever he wants us to do in taking ANLCA to the next level, we are ready to do it. However, we must all believe that we are all winners and no losers, the President must bring everyone outside back into the association, everyone of us equally have a role to play” he said
The main lecture at the retreat was delivered by Former President, Prince Olayiwola Shittu who took time to educate the officials on their constitutional roles, functions and the expectations from them.