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We inherited empty treasury, says ANLCA President Nwabunike

Iju Tony Nwabunike, National President, ANLCA

…inaugurates Kano, Abuja chapters’ executives

…says no chapter, zone is any ex-officers’ fiefdom

Chidi Ogbuokiri

Despite inheriting an almost empty treasury, the current leadership of the Association of Nigerian Licensed Customs Agents (ANLCA), has recorded unprecedented successes, President of the association Hon Iju Tony Nwabunike has said.

Disclosing this during his recent inauguration of the newly elected chapter executives of the Aminu Kano International Airport Chapter of ANLCA, President of the association, Hon. Iju Tony Nwabunike, listed the achievements of his about two years old National Executive Committee (NECOM) which includes but not limited to ensuring that the Nigeria Customs Service restores (unblocks) the 300 members licenses barred (blocked) before the Nwabunike administration took over; Transformation of the hitherto analogue ANLCA Secretariat to a modern functional office with ICT gadgets in place, etc.

He urged the members in the Kano Chapter to keep their compliance level high and shun anything that would place them on the wrong side of the law. “Keep yourselves abreast with import and export prohibition lists, avoid smuggling, make sincere declarations and shun any acts of concealments capable of illegalities that could lead to suspension or blocking of your licenses.”

Nwabunike said: “Upon resumption as national president of ANLCA, I met files containing list of over 300 licenses that were either blocked or suspended from operation by Nigeria Customs Service.

“This meant a lot to me because from my findings, each licence has capacity to provide an average of ten jobs and their non operational status has kept about three thousand persons out of employment.

“With dialogue and robust interactions, I got those licences unblocked and reactivated. Today they are all back to business. It is also important I add that non members of ANLCA also benefitted from this move because our association is truly the mother of others in our line of business.

“Also upon assumption of duty as National President with my team, we changed our inherited working mode from analogue to full automated operation. On the desk of all our National Officers are work stations connected to each other to enhance our service delivery to you.

“With very meager resources, taking over an almost empty treasury, we have been able to keep our great association running.”

Nwabunike further used the opportunity to dispel rumours that there was no love lost between him and his deputy, saying, “My personal and official relationship with the National Vice President, Dr. Kayode Collins Farinto, is very cordial. Disregard unverified stories stating the contrary.

“We all in NECOM are bringing our resources, education and exposure as capital to run ANLCA selflessly. We have elastic tolerance for those who see things differently from the way we see. It is our belief that reason will prevail and elected officials will not be hoodwinked or blackmailed by anyone including past officers.”

He noted that there had in recent days been series of media diatribes “in long interview sessions against us. Some even attempt describing us as uneducated.  My shock here is that people who never passed through the university system, are the ones querying the academic standing of some of us here with two university degrees. Laughable indeed!

He said: “ANLCA chapters, zones and national bodies are not exclusive fiefdom of any former officer or godfather. Elected officers owe allegiance to our constitution and recognised organs of hierarchy as constitutionally outlined.

Nwabunike said that ANLCA is truly great and that his dream is to lead it into greater accomplishments evolving into one of the leading bodies of customs brokers in Africa and indeed the world.

He urged members to invest in relevant gadgets and get acquainted with their usage to communicate effectively and boost your productivity at work

His words: “Our line of business is now technology driven and must be practiced in conformity with international best practices to synchronise with government’s ease of doing business and trade facilitation agendas.

“We need to do more to promote end to end seamlessness in cargo movements from ports to either warehouses, factories and markets as our own inputs in the world of e-commerce.

“For this reason, we shall be rolling out training and retraining programmes to be facilitated by a faculty of experts that will refresh us about things we already know and teach us new things that will help our professional and economic growth.”

He said that the leadership of the association has heard that the Federal Government recently approved an automation project for Nigeria Customs Service, but they are yet to get the full details of this and hope to keep in touch with any relevant information affecting the members’ business in this regard.

Meanwhile the Vice President of ANLCA, Dr Kayode Farinto has inaugurated the newly elected chapter executives of the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport Chapter of ANLCA.

Fatinto who stood in for the President at the event, witnessed the election alongside other National Executive Members (NECOM) at the chapter’s secretariat within the airport premises.

The ASECO chairman, Barr. Raymond- Oyimbah, and the Secretary, Segun Alabi conducted the election which saw the incumbent Chairman, Abdullazeez Abdulsalam returning unopposed for his second term in office.

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