The Council for the Regulation of Freight Forwarding in Nigeria (CRFFN) has called on the Minister of Transport, Senator Idris Umar to lift the suspension on the collection of the Internally Generated Revenue otherwise known as transaction fee.
Speaking during the official commissioning of the Freight Forwarders’ Headquarters and the commencement of a five day training programme for the staff of the CRFFN by the Honourable Minister of Transport, Senator Idris Umar in Lagos on Monday, the Registrar of the Council, Sir Mike Jukwe noted that the appeal became necessary to enable the council execute its numerous planned activities.
Jukwe said that although the Council was aware that the Minister was committed to lifting the suspension, he appealed to the Minister to hasten action on lifting of the suspension.
According to him,” our challenges are not far-fetched, inadequate funding to execute the numerous planned activities of the Council to be realized through the lifting of suspension on the collection of Internally Generated Revenue (Transaction fees). We are aware that the Honourable Minister is committed to lifting the suspension and we appeal to the Honourable Minister to do so as soon as possible”.
On the Commissioning of the Freight Forwarders’ Headquarters, he stated that the event signaled the relocation of CRFFN Headquarters’ activities from Abuja to Lagos, the major operational base of freight forwarding activities in the country.
“The Council is therefore strategically and better placed to engage stakeholders and practitioners to ensure efficient and effective service Delivery. We call on practitioners and stakeholders to take advantage of this proximity for overall benefit of our industry”, he said.
He added that the Council often embarks on training and re-training of the Council’s workforce for maximum and timely service delivery on their mandate so as to boast of professionally qualified and dedicated workforce even as he said that the 2014 staff training and retreat was the third in the series.
Responding, the Minister of Transport, Senator Idris Umar who was represented at the event by the Deputy Director (ICD) Maritime Services Department of the federal Ministry of Transport, Mr. Patrick Odey Ekawu while recalling the history of freight forwarding in Nigeria observed that the intervention of Concerned industry stakeholders led to the establishment of the CRFFN Act number 16 of 2007.
Senator Umar however said that the Council cannot achieve its mandate without functional offices, the reason the Council rented a property as Zonal offices in Lagos.
“However, with the provision of this new office in Apapa, the hub of port and shipping business in Nigeria, the opportunity for development of a modern and globally competitive freight forwarding system and by extension achieving the core function of the council’s mandate is now significantly improved”, Umar said.
He further admonished the staff on the training programme not to see their outing from their place of work as an opportunity to rest or a five-day holiday but to take the training serious as it was an important opportunity given to them.
Highlight of the event was the cutting of the tape to mark the official opening of the Freight Forwarders’ Headquarters by the representative of the Minister of Transport, Senator Idris Umar.