The National Association of Government Approved Freight Forwrders (NAGAFF) has described rival association, Association of Nigerian Licensed Customs Agents (ANLCA), as unpatriotic for demanding 10 per cent from the total revenue collected by the Nigerian Customs Service (NCS).
Speaking to Journalists on Thursday after the launch of the help desk of the association at Tin Can Island Port, the chapter Chairman of NAGAFF, Augustine Ekweozor dissociated NAGAFF from the demand.
He said NAGAFF is a professional and responsible association that is keen on rendering efficient service as against seeking monetary rewards from government.
He said, “NAGAFF as a professional body is not too keen about money. Money is not our priority; our priority is always to be in line with Cutoms on revenue collection and procedure.
“We are to make sure that we work with government of the country to be proud of government and government to be proud of us, people in NAGAFF are not traders, we are profesioners in the maritime industry so 10 percent or not, it is not our headache but our priority is to ensure that the government, port users and freight forwarders are happy with us and our service.”
Ekweozor said that while clearing agents are revenue generators, Customs are revenue collectors but “asking for ten per cent is like asking for too much”.
It would be recalled that the National President of ANLCA, Prince Olayiwola Shittu recently advocated 10 per cent as commission to Customs Brokers from the total revenue collected by the the NCS because of the role customs played in generating the revenue.
Meanwhile, the Tin Can chapter of NAGAFF has established help desk in all the Customs offices, terminals and major places at the Tin Can port for their members.
Ekweozor, during the inauguration of the officers and their introduction to major stakeholders in and around the ports environment, said the desk was important to attend to NAGAFF members when they are in need of help.
“The help desk officers were all taken to see people in authority and also to introduce them formally as our officers in their respective offices.
“We are also to tell them that the help desk officers are people they are to work hand in glove with and they have all assured of support – especially the Customs and Police,” he stated.
He said the the association has “been looking at the opportunity to talk to the CAC to discuss our challenges and tell him NAGAFF Tin Can Island is a new born because NAGAFF had image problem at Tin Can Island but as soon as we came onboard firstly a s a caretaker committee and as a substantive executive, we have been fighting to redeem the image of NAGAFF.
“We have been trying hard to change perception of people about us because having a bad image is not easy to correct and before we can seek people face we have to put our house in order which we have done.”—Ships and Ports