Mustapha Affirms Cancellation of Afolabi led-BoT Illegal Registration
…Urge Stakeholders To Support Rebuilding of ANLCA
BY EGUONO ODJEGBA
The legitimate Registered Board of Trustees (BoT) of the Association of Nigeria Licensed Customs Agents (ANLCA) has lent its voice to the controversy surrounding the second Certificate of Registration (CR), recently procured by the faction led by mega industrialist, Dr. Taiwo Afolabi, noting that the latter’s CR which it has since dubbed fake, has been revoked and subsequently thrashed, with the objection ‘X’ sign boldly running across it at the Corporate Affairs Commission website.
A statement jointly signed by the Chairman BoT, Alhaji Taiwo Mustapha and Secretary BoT, Prince Oyeniyi Taye on Thursday November 10, 2022; and made available to our reporter today by the interim National Executive Publicity Secretary, Mr. Francis Itua averred that the controversial CR issued on September 7, 2022 has been withdrawn by the CAC, effective November 1, 2022.
The authentic board in the statement attributed the development to the implacable sanctity of nature in the dispensation of retributive justice, which he described as timeless and irreproachable in the fullness of its incorrigibility.
The statement reads: “The truth shall always prevail, no matter for how long lies take to persist. This press statement is to formally inform the general public, especially stakeholders in the maritime industry, that the certificate of registration issued to the fake Owerri-selected BOT (of 16/12/2020), led by Chief Taiwo Afolabi of SIFAX Group of Companies by the Corporate Affairs Commission and dated 7th September 2022 has been formally cancelled on the 1st of November 2022.
“Consequent upon the foregoing, the status of the registration certificate of the Board of Trustees (BoT) of ANLCA, issued on the 16th of January 2020 has been restored forthwith.”
Given a brief overview of the crisis, the Mustapha led board said that as the lawful, recognized and legitimate authority, it has after due consideration decided to ignite life back in the association and thus offer its members the intendments for its formation; even as the board appealed to industry stakeholders to show understanding and support the new resolution.
“It must be recalled that the certificate of registration of the BOT (16/1/2020) of ANLCA, elected on the 13th of February 2014 in Warri-Delta State, came about as a result of the judgment delivered by Justice Rilwan Aikawa in Suit No. FHC/L/CS/1274/2018 on the 11th of October 2019, in which he declared that until and unless the members of the BOT elected on the 13/2/2014 are registered by the CAC, according to CAMA 2020, they stand null, void, of no consequence and inchoate in the eyes of the law.
“That judgment spurred the Alhaji Taiwo Mustapha led BOT to approach the CAC for registration. So, with the latest (1st November 2022 CAC Status report on their website) development surrounding the registration certificate of the BOT , all stakeholders are further informed and advised that the BOT of ANLCA, in line with the relevant provisions of the Supreme Constitution of ANLCA 2008 (as amended), especially at Section 13, Subsection 4 (c) and 22, sub 2 (c) are still fully in charge of affairs of ANLCA.
“In furtherance to our constitutional mandate therefore, and as earlier demonstrated, the Interim National Executive Committee (NECOM) put in place on the 24th of August 2022 to fill the vacuum created by the expired NECOM (16th April 2022) will henceforth administer the association, pending elections into vacant positions at the Chapters, Zones and National Levels, as directed by the BOT of ANLCA.
“The BOT shall therefore solicit the cooperation of all stakeholders in the Maritime Industry and the general public, to kindly accord the necessary courtesies to the interim NECOM led by Chief Pius Ujubuonu, please.”
This is even as the association’s embattled acting National President; Dr. Kayode Farinto has denied the said cancellation of his faction’s BoT registration, charging anyone making the allegation to present a letter from the CAC purportedly doing so.
Farinto who was reacting upon request to statement by a chieftain of the interim NECOM that he (Farinto) and Ozo Chukwura, Vice Chairman of the factional BOT fainted at the CAC office Abuja recently when they reportedly went to confirm the cancellation, denied visiting the CAC, even as he insisted that the controversial certificate of registration is valid.
Betraying a remarkable sense of concern about the protracted crisis, Farinto nevertheless insisted that the December 2020 Owerri AGM and all activities carried out by it are in place and actionable; including the vexatious counter BoT.
He explained that their camp has never been insensitive to the prospect of peace and resolution of the over four year leadership crisis, even as he accused the other side of been the one showing lack of sincerity in the peace moves.
He said, “Our side is ready to do that (settlement) but there are things we can’t just wished away because when five of the former board members were claiming to still have mandate, the association sold fresh forms and conducted a new board election.
“Each candidate bought their form for 600k and faced the voters before getting that mandate but the other side is insisting we cancel such election, it is not possible. We even bent backwards and said okay, 4 of them that can still contest will be allowed to join the new 9 and extend our board from 9 to 13 to have absolute peace yet they said no.
“They said we should bring 4 from the new board to join their own 4 while we do election for 1 to make up 9. Sincerely speaking don’t you think that the 5 amongst the new 9 will gang up again to foment trouble? The peace we are looking for will eventually elude the association, their demand is selfish and cannot fly”, he declared.