Contrary to the claims by members of the Board of Trustees (BoT) of the Association of Registered Freight Forwarders Nigeria (AREFFN) that he converted about N12, 000, 000 association’s fund, the National President of the association, Dr. Frank Ukor has dismissed the allegation as baseless and lacking evidence.
Ukor who refuted the allegation in a media briefing yesterday in Lagos said that it was the association which was owing him a large sums of money adding that by the time he articulate and render account of his stewardship, it would then be clear how much AREFFN was indebted to him.
He added that the only legitimate money that was supposed to come into the association’s coffer was the registration fee and that of the annual subscription saying that any other money that comes from CB (Contraband) or POF as currently being collected in some chapters were illegal money that has no need for it to be taken into the association’s purse.
According to him,” They said they were sending me money, about twelve million; they invited me to the police, when we got there, the police told me that they said I chop their money and I asked which money? I no chop any money. The money that was supposed to come into our coffers are; all monies on registration and all annual subscriptions. These are the legitimate money that supposed to come into the association and that money has not come into this place. Money that comes from POF should come to us, any other money like the one that comes from CB, you know it is an illegal something, who will you say that you gave the money? Where is the evidence? Such monies are monies that we share; such monies do not come into the coffers. That is why people in ANLCA want to kill themselves because of such monies because when such monies come, they are the ones controlling it, it does not come into the association’s purse per se.
“So, when they asked me, I said nothing. The money for registration and annual subscription, I have not seen one kobo, he (Alhaji Bala) has not sent me money, so I don’t know. If there is any other one, he sent it to me because I gave him appointment and he told me that he sends the money out of his goodwill from the money he makes, that he makes so much money. And when I get that money, that is the money that I put into this place.
“I have not given account, when I give account; the association will pay me a lot of money because they owe me a lot of money. If you look at all the properties in this place that we put here, they are my personal property. Since 2009 that we came to this place, N500,000 is what we pay here per annum, check how much it is.
“So, one day, innocent called me and said, Presido come, you know that we don’t have any idea about what is happening at Onne, you are the one who knows, can you tell us about the money and I told them that this man (Alhaji Bala) has not brought any money. We sat down and I explained to them the source of funds but you know, this one is an illegitimate fund, we don’t announce it but be that as it may, any money that they send to me, because I have the responsibility of keeping this place on, I was spending that money in this place.
“Even at the police, when the CSP that was handling the matter asked them how much was the money, they couldn’t even give a figure, they said whether it is about six million or there about, that they didn’t know, that it is only when they want to start investigation that they can now find out how much, that they don’t know exactly how much it is”.
On the allegation that Alhaji Bala remitted N2,000,000 to the association through him on monthly basis, Dr. Ukor said that the highest amount he had receive from him since late 2013 that the money started coming was N400,000, an amount which he said was not coming consistently even as he observed that as at 2016 when he stopped sending the, the money had dropped to about N250,000.
Recall that members of the AREFFN’s BoT accused Ukor of converting the association’s money sent to him by the Chairman of Onne chapter, Alhaji Bala Lawan Daura amounting to over N12,000,000 for the maintenance of the association asking him to account for the money or be ready to be taken to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for prosecution, an allegation, Dr. Ukor has since denied.
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