By Joshua Yousouph
The National Association of Government Approved Freight Forwarders (NAGAFF) has called on all freight forwarders to embrace professionalism. This is even as it advised all maritime stakeholders to vote their conscience in the 2023 general elections.
Speaking during the association’s 23rd Anniversary banquet in Lagos on Thursday, the founder of NAGAFF, Dr. Boniface Aniebonam stressed the need for freight forwarders to take the bull by the horn and ensure that they are adequately educated and certified to be professionals in their business and also vote the right candidate into government offices.
Aniebonam decried that the NAGAFF academy is not yet registered by the Council for the Regulation of Freight Forwarding in Nigeria (CRFFN), adding that CRFFN is the brainchild of NAGAFF. He also challenged freight forwarders to ensure that CRFFN is taken back from the full control of the government, stressing that the Council is not a government agency.
The founder of NAGAFF who also doubles as the founder of the New Nigeria Peoples Party (NNPP) informed that NNPP was founded in 2001 as a platform to encourage young minds to showcase their talents and popularity in order provide to change the narratives in politics and government in Nigeria.
While calling for stakeholders’ support for NNPP, Aniebonam urged all stakeholders to desist from all forms of political blackmail but vote their conscience in the coming general elections.
“NAGAFF at 23 is the first link of what God wants me to do for him and that has to do with the liberation struggle creating opportunities for the young freight forwarders to be able to do things on their own and have that self-confidence. That is why the NAGAFF Academy is very crucial to the administration of NAGAFF.
“It is quite unfortunate that the NAGAFF Academy is not yet registered by CRFFN despite the fact that CRFFN is the brainchild of NAGAFF. NAGAFF as an organisation under my watch founded CRFFN through an Act of the National Assembly which today is a Law. CRFFN as it were is not an agency of the government. It is a pseudo organisation and quassi government agency but those who were not part of the process bungled it and started parading themselves as government officials. But it is not over until it is over. The liberation struggle is ongoing and the matter is still before an Appeal court. I have given you the platform, NAGAFF as a freight forwarding association cutting across the boundaries of Nigeria, the NAGAFF Academy to study and the Law to back you up. You must take back your profession
Also speaking, the Registrar of the Council for the Regulation of Freight Forwarding in Nigeria (CRFFN), Barrister Sam Nwakohu harped on the importance of education and certification for all freight forwarders. He noted that the core mandate of the Council is to ensure that all practicing freight forwarders are duly registered, certified and professionalised.
Nwakohu informed that the Council has taken a decision to deregister any freight forwarder who does not possess at least a Diploma in Freight Forwarding by the end of 2023. He however advised that freight should ensure they enroll for training and are fully-certified before the deadline to avoid being de-registered or denied to practice freight forwarding in Nigeria.
In his welcome speech, the National President of the Association, Chief Tochukwu Esizi noted that NAGAFF shall continue to lead the way by bringing new ideas and innovation into the maritime industry through new and evolving digital technology, maintaining and improving new values, standards, ethics and professional ethos of the industry.
While appreciating all relevant stakeholders for their unflinching support to the success of the association and the promotion of ease of doing business at port, Ezisi stressed that NAGAFF through constant stakeholders engagements will continue to remain proactive and dynamic in its advocacy campaigns, until the Maritime sector cum freight forwarding is enthroned as a leading economic contributor to the national treasury.
Also speaking, the Lagos governorship candidate for the Labour Party (LP), Mr. Gbadebo Rhodes-Vivour noted that the maritime industry is an extremely important sector of Lagos State that must run efficiently.
Rhodes-Vivour decried the bad roads, lack of infrastructure and worrisome traffic situation at the ports in Lagos. He however promised to ensure that the problems are tackled through adequate provision of multi modal transport system, proper call up system and eradication for harassments from touts.
He also promised to work closely with the maritime stakeholders to ensure more exportation of goods, efficiency in port operations and provision of more ports in Lagos and across Nigeria.
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