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AREFFN To Make Freight Forwarding Business A Veritable Venture For Young Nigerians



… To annually inject at least 1,000 young graduates into industry***

The Association of Registered Freight Forwarders of Nigeria (AREFFN) has declared its intention to make the freight forwarding business a veritable and profitable venture for young graduates seeking to make career choices in the industry.

AREFFN National Secretary, Francis Obiekezie, who made this declaration in his chat with journalists in Lagos said “The aspiration of AREFFN is that we want to inject at least one thousand young graduates into this industry every year”.

In his words; “We even want to establish a link with NYSC Camp so as to catch them young, because we find out there are lots of cross-border trading going on and these are things you cannot do when you are stark illiterate.

*AREFFN National Secretary, Francis Obiekezie

“These businesses were originally dominated by people who are not sufficiently trained and prepared for it so it cannot be a last resort business for people in the future so our aim is to make freight forwarding business a venture to be proud of in the near future” he stressed.

*AREFFN National Secretary, Francis Obiekezie

“Right now, we have done about two batches of different trainings by CRFFN in conjunction with Redeemers University at our Training Hall, we are about to start another batch for Higher National Diploma with freight forwarders” Obiekezie stressed. On issues of members leaving the association for one reason or the other Obiekezie said.

“In the past, we have always been having one crisis or the other leading members to be disgruntled. Just like in political parties some people come and some people go and in those days AREFFN was kind of turbulent and always fighting, our founding father, Dr. Frank Ukor was always in the news having one crisis or the other with either Customs officials or Standard Organization of Nigeria and so on.

“But at a point, we decided to re-strategize because we felt that the approach adopted would not take us to where we wanted to go and might defeat the purpose in which the association was created because people might be hearing about us but we reconsider are they hearing about us in a positive or negative way.

“Today AREFFN has about 2 members in the council after our 2022 CRFFN election with only three associations surviving in that council and AREFFN is one of them, we adopted the strategy not that we are regressive but because we are progressive.

*AREFFN National Secretary, Francis Obiekezie

“When Dr. Ukor asked me to conduct the election in 2018, I took it upon myself to harmonize the two groups at that time leading to a smooth handing over that time.

“However credit should be given to AREFFN President, Alhaji Baba Daura Lawan for ensuring peace and stability in AREFFN since 2018, we secured the current office in 2020 under him, also our Secretariat in Onne which is bigger than the Lagos Office was also secured under Alhaji Lawan.

“That we survived an election into CFRRN was no mean feat because that election was more turbulent than what we have in Nigeria’s General Election.

On challenges in cargo clearance, the AREFFN National Secretary said; “Some of the challenges we are facing is what we are facing on a daily basis, for instance, the road leading to the port is congested as takers and containers have taken over a part of the road, the other part of the road has also been taken over by dumpsite with dirt everywhere along the axis.

“One of the factors we use in assessing the port everywhere in the world is good access road in and out. Because in the freight forwarding business, or job is not finished until your goods get to the warehouse or the market. “Another challenge is the issue of Marine Police, the other time the new Minister of Marine and Blue Economy came he was complaining that there are about 6000 containers abandoned in the port and when you have such an amount of abandoned containers in the port, you ask yourself, what is the size of these two ports.

“That is why we talk of congestion and the high cost of loading and transportation of containers.
“Now why will marine police stop containers that have been cleared and released by the customs and other agencies and nobody is doing anything about it. Manual processing of documentation in the port is another problem we are contending with as freight forwarders” he concluded.

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MWUN Congratulates PTML Management On Acquisition Of MV Great Lagos



*MV Great Lagos

…Describes ship as a marvel of modern engineering

The Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria (MWUN) under the leadership of its President-General, Comrade Adewale Adeyanju, has congratulated the Managing Director of Grimaldi Shipping Company, Mr. Ascanio Ruso, and his management for acquiring “MV GREAT LAGOS”, noting that it is the first of its kind in Nigeria.

The ship is described as a marvel of modern engineering with functions of environmental consciousness built to meet the challenges of modern-day technology in the maritime industry.

“This suffices to say that Ascanio Ruso is one of the best maritime administrators in Nigeria, who treats workers in his employ with humane and dignity for labour,” Adeyanju, a Prince of Ibaan further stated.

NLC: MWUN President-General, Adeyanju, to vie for Deputy National President post

“I wish to categorically state here again that Mr. Ascanio is a wonderful Managing Director with a human face and one of the foremost employers of labour in the industry. Your blood flows with genuine intentions of fair treatment to workers’ welfare in the maritime space.

*MV Great Lagos

“We in the Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria Congratulate you on this laudable milestone achievement. Once again, we say congratulations to Mr. Ascanio Ruso and your management team,” Prince Adeyanju said.

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Makinde Presents N434.2bn 2024 Budget Proposal For Oyo State



PDP’s Agboworin wins House of Representatives re-run election in Oyo

 Gov. Seyi Makinde of Oyo State on Tuesday presented a budget of N434.2 billion for 2024 to the State House of Assembly for consideration and approval.

According to Makinde, the budget is made up of N222.3 billion for capital expenditure, and N211.8 billion for recurrent expenditure.

Presenting the budget tagged: “Budget of Economic Recovery”, the governor said the capital expenditure is 2.4 percent higher than the recurrent expenditure.

He added that the 2024 budget was estimating an increased Internally Generated Revenue of N72 billion with an average of N6 billion monthly.

Education gets the highest share of the budget with N90.6 billion or 20.8 percent of the budget, followed by Infrastructure which gets N74.3 billion or 17.1 percent of the appropriation bill.

The health sector takes the third position with N40.9 billion, which is 9.4 percent and Agriculture has N15.8 billion, which is 3.6 percent of the total budget proposal.

PDP’s Agboworin wins House of Representatives re-run election in Oyo

*Governor Seyi Makinde

He promised that the 2024 budget would cover projects, policies, and actions “which when implemented will cushion the effect t of the hardship the people are facing as a result of fuel subsidy removal.”

Makinde further said that his administration would continue to use technology to block loopholes, saying his government has no plan to increase taxes.

He urged the House of Assembly to see to the speedy passage of the budget proposal for the state’s economic growth and benefit of the people of Oyo State.

Responding after the presentation, the Speaker of the House of Assembly, Mr ‘Debo Ogundoyin (PDP Ibarapa East) assured the governor of speedy consideration of the Appropriation Bill.

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Reps Committee Issues Warrant Of Arrest On CBN Governor, Others



..Following their alleged refusal to appear, four times when invited

The House of Representatives Committee on Public Petition has issued a warrant of arrest on the Central Bank Governor, Mr Olayemi Cardoso, the Accountant General of the Federation, Mrs Oluwatoyin Madein, and 17 others for refusing to appear before it to answer questions on their operations.

This followed the adoption of a motion by Rep. Fred Agbedi (PDP-Bayelsa) at the committee’s hearing on Tuesday.

Moving the motion, Agbedi said that the arrest warrant had become inevitable following the attitude of the invitees.

He said that the parliament worked with time and the CEOs had been invited four times but failed to respond.

He said that the CEOs should be brought to appear before the committee by the Inspector General of Police through a warrant of arrest after due diligence by the Speaker, Rep. Tajudeen Abbas.

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In his ruling, the Chairman of the committee, Rep. Micheal Irom (APC-Cross River)  said that the I-G should ensure the CEOs were brought before the committee on Dec. 14.

Earlier, the petitioner, Mr Fidelis Uzowanem, said that the petition was anchored on the Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI) report of 2021.

He said that the report was a summary of the transactions in the oil and gas industry for 2021 which NEITI could to be challenged.

“We took up the challenge to examine the report and discovered that what NEITI put together is a report is only a consolidation of fraud that has been going on in the oil and gas industry.

“It dates back to 2016 because was have been following and we put up a petition to this committee to examine what has happened.

“The 2024 budget of 27.5 trillion that has been proposed can be confidently be funded from the recoverable amount that we identified in the NEITI report.

“It is basically a concealment of illegal transactions that took place in NNPCL, they have been in the sink with some oil companies where some companies that did not produce crude were paid cash call, an amount paid for crude oil production,” he said.
He added: “We also found that the cash core payment was used as a channel for laundering funds by NNPCL and we found out that NEITI was able to conceal it in its report.

“In 2021 NEITI reported that Total Exploration and Production Nigeria-Ltd was paid 168 million dollars but examination of submission by the company shows that it received 292 million dollars.

“In other words, 124 million dollars were laundered by NNPCL through Total because monies that have been officially paid to Total could not have been concealed if it were not meant for fraudulent purposes.

“Also for Chevron, the dollar payment NEITI puts forward in its report was 76 million dollars but document emanating from Chevron showed that they received as much as 267 million dollars.”

“In other words, 191 million was laundered under the cover of Chevron and NEITI concealed that; also, Nigeria Agip Company received 188 million dollars but none of it was reported by NEITI”.

Some of those to be arrested were the Chief Executive Officer of National Petroleum Investment Management Services (NAPIMS), that of Ethiop Eastern Exploration and Production Company Ltd, as well as the CEO of Western Africa Exploration and Production.

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