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ANLCA commended for collaborating with Customs to improve ships’ turnaround time


The Association of Nigerian Licensed Customs Agents
(ANLCA) was at the weekend  recognised
and commended by the Presidency for 
working with the Nigeria Customs Service(NCS) to achieve improvement in
the turnaround time of vessels that call at the Nigerian ports.
The Vice President, Arc. Namadi Sambo, who applauded
the association while speaking at the event of the commissioning of an
ultra-modern secretariat in Lagos, remarked that the collaboration had also
ensured improved revenue generated for government.
“ANLCA is an association that has in collaboration
with the Nigerian Customs Service improved the operations of the maritime
industry, and improved the turnaround time of ships. What we are witnessing
today is an evidence of the cooperation between the Customs and the agents,”
Sambo said.
Sambo who was represented at the event by the special
adviser to the President on maritime matters, Mr. Leke Oyewole, said ANLCA had
contributed remarkably to the improvement of operations in the industry.
 He remarked
that the association’s achievement of building and commissioning an
ultra-modern national secretariat in Lagos was indicative of the benefits of
the consolidation going on in the maritime industry.
In his words: “It is a wonderful development and a
thing that is long expected, but the fact that we expected it does not
translate to actualising it, so, I must give them (ANLCA) all the credit
because the vision to do this is commendable and  it is a manifestation of
the consolidation going on in the maritime sector.”

Also speaking, the Minister of Transport, Senator
Idris Umar, commended the association for its achievement, saying “the new
secretariat would help promote efficient and effective performance of the
association’s role as regional headquarters in West and Central Africa.”
Umar who was also represented by his special adviser
on maritime operations, Tahir Dikko, said that the newly- commissioned facility
would enhance productivity and serve as a unifying factor to all stakeholders.
 “This facility will no doubt increase the access
to business information, prompt release of goods on arrival in any Nigerian
port at a reduced cost.”
 He said that celebration of 60th anniversary by
the association was a landmark achievement in its lifespan, as well as an
evidence of sustainability of its purpose of functions over the years.
“The FG is aware of the critical role the
association is playing in the nation’s revenue generation through the Nigerian
Customs, and this has also drastically reduced the smuggling of
contraband and other malpractices at the nation’s port.
 “In this
regard, the FG remains committed to collaborate with any organisation in the
maritime sector in realising 48 hours cargo clearance target, whose
objective is to decongest the ports, bring down cost and attract greater
patronage with the ultimate goal of facilitating trade.”
 In his speech, the Comptroller-General of
Customs, Alhaji Dikko Abdulahi Inde, described the completion of the national
secretariat as determination of the association to establish itself as a
professional body.
“For me, your 60th anniversary is an indication that
ANLCA has come of age as a strong and critical institution in the trade
facilitation chain. The commissioning of a permanent structure as your national
secretariat also symbolises your bold determination to establish your
association as a professional body.  The
Nigerian Customs Service therefore wishes to identify with you on this occasion
and to affirm our commitment to partnering with you in attaining
professionalism.”
 Dikko expressed his congratulation to the
president of the association and members of the executive committee, and reaffirmed
the commitment of the Service to partnering with the association in achieving
professionalism.
 “We note with satisfaction the cooperation that
the Customs has enjoyed from ANLCA over the years, particularly under the
leadership of Prince Olayiwola Shittu. We also acknowledged the remarkable feat
achieved by ANLCA which currently participated in local and international
conferences. We are indeed proud of Price Shittu’s achievement,” the Customs
Chief said.
 Going down memory lane on how the building plan
was achieved, the National President of ANLCA, Prince Olayiwola Shittu, said it
was the generous contribution of the CGC and his friends that helped the
project come alive.
 “I cannot but mention with gratitude from my
mind what the CGC of Customs contributed towards the success of this dream.
When I whispered to him that we needed a permanent national secretariat,
because I told him we could not continue paying rent, he said he had heard and
I also told DCG Tahir about the dream and he told me not to worry.
 “But when it was dragging and I called DCG, he
said I should not worry but, one day I went on an official visit and the CGC
asked me to give some people in his office my card, I thought it was for bills
of laden to start falling, but I never knew it was the beginning of the
realisation of this dream.
 “That was when the friends of CGC Dikko laid the
foundation of this place by generous contributions. The man is a man with magic
wand and I am happy that I became the president during his tenure,” Shituu
said.
 Source: Ships and Ports.

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