In line with the expectations of the freight forwarders, the Council for the Regulation of Freight Forwarding in Nigeria (CRFFN) has commenced the activities leading to the election of its Governing Council members with the setting up of a Committee to midwife the elction.
The Committee, Primetime Reporters gathered was set up in a meeting of the Governing Council held on the 3rd of September, 2020 in Abuja.
Speaking on the development, the Registrar of the Council, Barr. Samuel Nwakohu said that the Committee is headed by the representative of the Ministry of Transportation whom he simply identified as Dr. Hussein while he (the Registrar) is to serve as the Secretary.
Nwakohu added that the committee which now has a Chairman and a Secretary would be expanded as time goes on.
According to him, “The tenure of the present Board has not expired, it could expire one day. We are in September; the machinery for holding election has just been put in place. During our last Governing Council meeting, a committee has been put in place to take the responsibility for the election for which I am the Secretary of the Committee. So, very soon, you will see activities in relation to that. Nobody is interested in extending their tenure.
“The Chairman is Dr. Hussein from the Ministry of Transportation; he is actually the representative of the Ministry on the Board. The Committee will be developed from that. It has a Chairman, it has a Secretary and so, it will build up the committee members with time.”
On when the election was expected to hold, the Registrar said, “We haven’t even met, we will meet very soon. We just finished the last Governing Council meeting on the 3rd of September, we are yet to meet. There are so many activities that are going on right now but we will meet very soon to show that we are serious about it. We will go on and do the election just to show everybody that nobody is interested in tenure elongation as it has always been said.
“There have been so many misconceptions here and there. Yes! People have been calling us but we told them, look, this thing is very straight forward; there is no hanky-panky game in it.”
On why the election had been delayed till this time, he said, “How can you hold election when it is not due? Don’t forget that we are just coming out of a lockdown. We have some level of freedom now since July when you could actually travel from one state to the other. We are still in the Covid regime, lockdown has been eased but we are still in the Covid regime. Some of us are just managing to start working. All our efforts all these while has been addressed towards Covid, how to contain Covid-19. It is not when you start talking about Council election. Are you aware that 90% of the workforce has not started work in this place and in most government agencies? How many of us are in this building now?”
However, in a sharp disagreement, a member of the Governing Council who do not want his name in print wondered how the management could be talking of election now when they were actually elected for a four year tenure.
According to him, “Our tenure is for four years now. Don’t mind those who are busy talking trash, those who are saying that nonsense are wasting their time. We were elected for four years; that is it now.”
He added that it was the appointed representatives from the six geopolitical zones and representatives from establishments and institutions that they change every two years in rotation.
When reminded that the Act establishing the Council provided for two year tenure for the Council members, he retorted, “That one is for the rotation for the office of the Chairman and the Vice Chairman which is for two year tenure.”
On why he didn’t object the decision to set up a committee to conduct election since he was at the meeting, he said, “We just tried to play along because there is a game they are playing. You know, the initial plan they made was to get their tenure extended by pursing the amendment bill but we are on it. The tenure for the elected Council members is four years. You cannot read that very 4th Schedule separately from Section 21 (c) to (d).”
Photo: The Registrar, Council for the Regulation of Freight Forwarding in Nigeria (CRFFN), Barr. Samuel Nwakohu.
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