ANLCA says it is not against registering with CRFFN

The President of the Association of Nigerian Licensed Customs Agents (ANLCA), Alhaji Olayiwora Shitu has debunked insinuations that members of his body were not ready to register with the Council for the Regulation of Freight Forwarding in Nigeria (CRFFN).

Many people had thought that ANLCA and the National Council of Managing Directors of Customs Agents (NCMDCA) led by Mr Lucky Amiwero were not ready to register with the CRFFN , one of the reasons why the Transportation Minister, Rotimi Amaechi, had given an order that all customs brokers or freight forwarders must register with the Council or lose their licences.

Shitt, however, said that he was in support of the registration having registered with the CRFFN long time ago, and gave his CRFFN registration number as RFF 00004.

He also said that other members had been registering for years, adding that nobody has right to say no to the registration to practise.

He said that the transportation minister was misinformed that ANLCA members were not registering with the CRFFN.

According to him, “we have been registering for years. Nobody has right not to be registered to practise. Everybody must register.”

The Transportation Minister had given two weeks deadline for the registration.

However, President of the NCMDCA, Mr Lucky Amiwero had said that the Minister had no right to give such order on where customs brokers or freight forwarders should register.

Amiwero argued that customs brokers are regulated under the Customs Excise Management Act (CEMA) and not by the CRFFN, adding that there could not be two regulations.

Amiwero said that as far as he was concerned, the power of revocation or suspension of licences was with the Ministry of Finance.

He also claimed that right now the CRFFN had no board.

He argued that those who should concern themselves with CRFFN registration should be mainly transporters who move cargoes, adding that as far as he was concerned customs brokers were trade experts.

He said that customs brokers had nothing to do with carrying cargo, but in interpreting principles of international trade.

He claimed that the CRFFN only exists in Nigeria and nowhere else in the world, adding that the Minister was not properly briefed.

Besides, he said there is an ongoing court case on the issue.

However, a  member of NAGAFF described Amiwero’s view on the Minister’s order as totally wrong, adding that CRFFN from historical background was established to regulate all clearing agents, whether as customs brokers or freight forwarders.

He said, “Amiwero and some people do not want to be regulated. There is no industry where regulation is not in force. It is for sanity of every industry.

“As at the time CRFFN was set up, it was clear that customs agents under whatever name were lacking regulation and therefore behaving anyhow and causing trouble in the ports environment.”