The founder, National Association of Government Approved Freight Forwarders (NAGAFF), Dr. Boniface Aniebonam has frowned at the continuous misrepresentation of the freight forwarders by men of the press and the maritime stakeholders in general describing it as a slight on the noble profession.
Aniebonam who made his displeasure over the development known during the inauguration of the reconstituted National Executive Council (NEC) of NAGAFF in Lagos however said that the onus was on the freight forwarders themselves now to jettison the nomenclature”customs clearing agents”.
“You are not customs clearing agents, the law has given us a status as freight forwarders, we can go further and say we are logistics managers. So, you don’t have any reason to carry any identity card that refers you as a clearing and forwarding agents, it means you don’t know what you are doing.
“So, we are going to change the structure, we are going to change the nomenclature, these are part of the things NAGAFF must correct. At our level, we try to communicate with those who write letters to us and put clearing and forwarding, we returned the letters and say no, don’t use that word for us.
“And then of course, the gentleman of the press, you really need to help us because you are part of us, to change the concept, to change the way we do things in our country, to report effectively. Stop calling us clearing and forwarding agents, we are freight forwarders the law backs it up, Act 16 of 2007. We are not begging anybody, we are basing our pronouncement on law because it is the law that guides us”, he said.
He therefore charged the newly inaugurated officers to embrace education adding that with knowledge, they could go far in their profession as freight forwarders even as he said that there was no limit to education.
He continued,” We have brought opportunity for you to your doorstep and that is why we are collaborating with Redeemers’ University and all other institutions. Saturdays you must be here”.
Earlier in his welcome address, the National President of NAGAFF, Chief Increase Uche recalled that his agenda had been to pursue vigorously the agenda of NAGAFF thereby soliciting the support of the newly inaugurated national officers in this regard.
Uche added that holding a position in the association was certainly a very big task as well as a very big achievement for one as a career freight forwarder to attain such a position as being a national officer in the association.
According to him,”It is certainly also a very great challenge, it is my intention to ensure that you are all guided properly from the onset. I do not wish to recount few things we have achieved before now because there are so many areas yet untested and there are so many things yet to be accomplished as a professional association. Together, I am giving you the assurance that we will take NAGAFF to the greatest height required of a professional association.
“That my intention is to ensure close watch and to be as near as I could to every national officer in seeing that close monitoring and supervision, we will ensure that we achieve the target for our being inaugurated today.
“I therefore urge every national officer here to be inaugurated to make himself or herself available”.
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