It was all glitz and glamour as the members of the Association of Nigerian Licensed Customs Agents (ANLCA) yesterday rolled out drums to welcome her Ambassador cum representative, Miss Adaeze Glory Obodozie in the just concluded maritime beauty pageant – Face of Maritime International (FOMI) organized by Platform Communications in Lagos.
Obodozie who went into the contest as Miss ANLCA came out third in the contest which is aimed at exposing the potentials of the maritime industry to young girls with the intent to get them interested in picking up a career in industry erroneously believed to be reserved for men only.
Speaking during the reception held at the ANLCA national secretariat in Lagos, the National President of the association, Chief Tony Iju Nwabunike while assuring Obodozie that the maritime industry would change her life also believed that she would grow to become a maritime consultant of great repute.
“God knows why Adaeze became our Queen and I am assuring her that yes, she did not come first, that lady that came first, within one or two years will turn around to be jealous of you because this is a place you have minimum of 4,000 Managing Directors, I am not talking about our workers, I am talking about licensed customs agents, they are all there for you and you are representing them.
“By the time we have our NEC where we present you to all members of the Association of Nigerian Licensed Customs Agents, you see us – from Port-Harcourt to Kano, from Kano to Sokoto, from Sokoto to Abuja, from Abuja to Seme, from Seme to Calabar and you will tour all these places. We have 18 chapters and all the chairmen will welcome you.
“So, I think that this is the beginning of your wonderful journey in the maritime industry. We believe in training and retraining of our members and you have to go through serious training in maritime so that if you are representing ANLCA, you will be able to know and understand what we are doing because you are the face of the association in that area. So, you have a whole lot of work to do too. Meanwhile, we have to thank you so much and congratulate you” he said.
Nwabunike also thanked the organizer of the pageant, Mr. Sylvanus Obasi of the Platforms Communications for taking up the challenge of grooming young girls to take interest in the maritime business describing the job as very demanding and tasking.
He said, “But I have to thank the man behind the wheels, Sylvanus Obasi because it is not easy to put up this thing. Most times, I see FOMI – Face of Maritime International, I look at it as something that should not border me at all because I believe that beauty pageant is for ladies or for more serious people who are into fashion, I never knew he has taken it so high into maritime industry and today, women are agitating that they will take over from Obasi. So, whatever is the case, we need to thank somebody that initiated it and that is Obasi.
“Obasi, we are very proud of you, we are very happy with what you have done. It is not easy, taking a decision, bringing up these young ladies. Bringing them out of their houses is not easy but it is a good job, keep it up. We thank you so much for giving us the opportunity with our Queen, getting to third position is not easy. I am very sure they were up to twenty before elimination started but look at us getting third position, I am very sure next year, the pageant will continue and I am sure she (Obodozie) will groom another Queen so that we can grab that first position. We need that first position.”
On his part, the CEO of Platform Communications, Mr. Sylvanus Obasi thanked members of the association for standing solidly behind their candidate throughout the duration of the pageant describing Obodozie who is now FOMI Queen Tourism as a goal getter.
According to him, “Like the President said, it wasn’t an easy contest. We got over 105 registration and after audition, we picked over 35 candidates and from there eviction started. Some were evicted and there were some who at a point couldn’t make it and they dropped. At the end, it was eight that made it to the grand finale and out of that eight, ANLCA came third. I must commend ANLCA for their support, I know the notice was a bit impromptu and we are working on it so that next year, we are going to give each organization ample time to get set for it.”
On the qualities of Miss ANLCA, Obasi said, “The ANLCA candidate has some sterling qualities, I must also confess. As a matter of fact, she heard about this contest like two days to the audition. On the day of the audition, the way she walked in, she wasn’t in the recommended attire because she heard it so sudden, she just decided to come but I noticed something about her, she has a personality that you cannot ignore wherever she is.
“She came to that audition unprepared, she did well, the Judges confessed that she answered questions intelligently even though she wasn’t prepared and from there, she kept on doing well on her own before she now chose to represent ANLCA and I told Mr. President in the camp that this your candidate is dominating this camp, that she has a domineering character, a strong personality that wherever she is, whenever she talks, you must listen to whoever is talking. She did her best.
“At this juncture, we want to say a very big thank you to ANLCA. This is your Queen, this is your Ambassador, this is your Envoy, we are presenting her to you, feel free to use her for whatever project or venture you want to, we will make her available for that purpose.”
Responding, the FOMI Queen Tourism, Miss Adaeze Glory Obodozie while thanking members of ANLCA for supporting her and Platform Communications for giving her the opportunity said, “I am proud to be called ANLCA, anywhere I go to, I don’t want to know, I am ANLCA. I intend taking a maritime course next year because it doesn’t just end here, the knowledge I gained here, I mean there is a lot of opportunities. Within this few times, I have come to realize that maritime is not only for men. But today, I am proud to be part of ANLCA.”
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