Customs CG; Wale Adeniyi, Olayiwola Shittu, Comrade Adeyanju Felicitate with Asu Beks @ 70

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Elder Asu Beks

By DAPO OLAWUNI

The Comptroller General of the Nigeria Customs Service, Wale Adeniyi, President General of Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria (MWUN) as well as former President of Association of Nigerian Licensed Customs Agents (ANLCA) are among the many stakeholders who have felicitated with Elder Asu Beks, a maritime media icon on the celebration of his 70th birthday today, 8th of January 2024.

The customs CG in his letter to Asu Beks, the Chief Executive of Maritime Media Limited and Publisher of Shipping World Magazine, dated 5th January 2024, attested that Asu Beks’s life has been marked by excellence, resilience, and invaluable contributions to the field of journalism and beyond.

Adeniyi’s message read in part “On the occasion of your 70th birthday, I wish to extend my warmest felicitations to you and your family.

“As we felicitate with you on this milestone, we note with admiration that you have traversed a remarkable journey filled with academic achievements, professional milestones, and unwavering dedication to your craft.

“Your foray into unionism and activism began at the College of Education, where you got elected as Public Relations Officer of the Students Union Government. This early involvement set the stage for a career that is defined by a commitment to truth, justice, and the pursuit of excellence.

“Your professional odyssey led you through various roles, starting with the Bendel State Ministry of Information and later the Rivers State Newspaper Corporation. At the Nigerian Tide, you served as the Lagos City Editor and Northern Area Editor in Kaduna. Your tenure in Kaduna coincided with the inception of the Democrat Newspaper, where you played a pivotal role as Rivers State Bureau Chief.

“Throughout your career, you have continued to demonstrate journalistic prowess, eventually joining The Guardian Newspaper as Bureau Chief in Port Harcourt. Your impactful reporting earned you the prestigious “Best Reporter Award” in December 1989, recognizing your role in uncovering an attempt to dump toxic beef at the Tin Can Island Port by an Italian vessel.

“It is well known fact that you are the founding President of the Maritime Reporters Association of Nigeria (MARAN), the League of Maritime Editors (LOME), and the Board of Trustees Chairman of the Association of Maritime Journalists (AMJON). Your dedication to the maritime sector has been further evidenced by your role as the CEO at Maritime Media Limited and Publisher of Shipping World Magazine.

“As we celebrate this landmark, it is with all humility that | admit your immense contributions to my success story during my tenure as the National Public Relations Officer of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS). Your role in using the might of your pen to contribute to the development of NCS and the nation at large is unquantifiable.

“As we join you in celebrating the 70th birthday of Elder Asu Beks, we acknowledge not only your professional achievements but also your role as a devoted family man. Your legacy serves as an inspiration to aspiring journalists and a testament to the impact one person can have on an industry.

“May this milestone birthday be a joyous occasion filled with reflections on a life well-lived and the anticipation of continued success in the years ahead”

The President General of Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria (MWUN) Comrade Adewale Adeyanju on his part described Asu Beks as a maritime heritage whose professionalism has impacted on the sector positively.

He said “I am proud of you, Comrade Elder Asu Beks; we as a Union profoundly celebrate you once again, given your tenacity, boldness with your publication, Shipping World Magazine, which has become a trailblazer in the Industry .

“May your tireless and selfless efforts in the sector continue to wax stronger and as you celebrate today, the Almighty God will continue to grant stronger as you celebrate today, the Almighty God will continue you good health and sound mind enmeshed in longevity”

On his part, former ANLCA President, Prince Olayiwola Shittu described Asu Beks as an indefatigable doyen of maritime media and one-man squad industry advocate for good governance.

“I understand that Asu Beks means many things to different people; for some of us, he remains a jolly good fellow. His uncommon facility to fight and then makes up easily with the one he had fought with the next day after had always fascinated me, because it speaks about a childlike nature that l think is missing in many of us.

“His unassuming characteristics is one l think is not easily faked, so l believe he possesses that rare quality of childlikeness clothed in the purity of unsoiled innocence .

“Of the two prefixes to his name, l have been used to the Godfather, corrupted as ‘god fada’ for a long time already; while l am still struggling to situate his other title of ‘elder’; because l think that former clearly overshadows the later .

“His claim to being the maritime media god fada is almost authoritative, since his colleagues have concurred; and that settles the matter. And without controversy, as for the revered title of an Elder, l guess that having clocked 60 years back, it is of no avail to begrudge him that too, having merited it by grace and entitlement; he has joined the elders club.

“I have known Elder Asu Beks for close to three decades, as a diligent, hard working media professional and likeable personality. But of course, he has also courted trouble as those opposed to his unique life style and perceived foibles. But perhaps, Asu Beks was born a survivalist.

“For the open minded, it’s difficult to want to shut him out for reasons of his occupational quarrels and fights; and indeed his other associated fights, as it were. Today, at 70, l believe he has paid his dues in helping to reshape this industry through his immense contributions vide constructive and developmental journalism.

“l wish to join many others celebrating this great guy today, the best of luck as he journeys on to 80 and beyond; and to doff my hat for him for every act of good we as individuals can identify him with. I desire to see more of these in the coming years as l wish him a fabulous, safe and secured future” Shittu said

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