Dr. Aniebonam is Not Just Only Liberator of Freight Forwarders But a Capacity Builder – Comrade Nwonu

Comrade Simeon Nwonu, the deputy National President NAGAFF headquarters


…Says Customs Brokerage is Part of Freight Forwarding chain


  • Posted by Maritime Newsroom


  • The National Chairman of the New Nigerians Party and founder of the National Association of Government Approved Freight Forwarders (NAGAFF)  Dr. Boniface Aniebonam has been described as one of the best things that has happened to the Nigeria’s freight forwarding community particularly in terms of human capacity development within the sector.

The former Customs officer turned a renowned freight forwarding practitioner and a consultant of a high repute, the Deputy National President NAGAFF Headquarters, Comrade Simeon Nwonu who stated this in an interview with Maritimenewsroom said, NAGAFF through Dr. Aniebonam has a vision to liberate the freight forwarding practitioners and make them be at per with their counterparts in other profession.

Comrade Nwonu said that freight forwarding as a profession, involves a lot and included all forms of haulage, logistics, courier services and many other services that have to do with movement of goods and services from the point of origin to the importer’s warehouse.

Speaking about the 2018 Annual General Meeting (AG) which is taking place at Rockview Hotel Apapa, Lagos followed by Freight Forwarders’ Day celebration 2018, Comrade Onu maintained that: ”Yes the AGM is coming up on November 28 while our freight forwarders day will follow on November 29,2018 at the same Rockview Hotel Apapa, Lagos. The AGM is meant for us (members of NAGAFF) to come together. It will precede the freight forwarders day celebration. The AGM is taking place in the night of 28 November at Rock view Hotel. It is  time for us to sit together and look at our areas of strength and areas of weakness. It equally meant for us  exploit new avenues with a view to achieving more. So that is the primary motive of the AGM.”

On the celebration of the freight forwarders’, the deputy national president said: ”It is a day that is set outside for all practitioners in the freight forwarding business including those in the courier services, logistics business, haulaging industry, Customs and many others, they are all coming.
Earlier, we thaught of holding it outside Lagos but because of the logistics, we decided to hold it in Lagos. We know that the day is promising. Including those in logistics business they are all there. NPA, NIMASA, NSC, Immigrations name them, they will be there.”

Elaborating more on what freight forwarding is all about, he however, said: ”You see, freight forwarding is a chain. It is all those activities involving movement of goods and services from the port of origin to the port of destination and down to the importer’s warehouse. So freight forwarding profession is not only the freight forwarders you see at the ports. It include those traders you see everywhere including the Customs brokers. But Customs brokers are the secondary aspect of freight forwarding. So, we have the haualage industry, those who transport these containers, they are part of the chain, those in the business of courier services, they are part of it. They are part of the supply chain management. So when you are talking about freight forwarding sector. They are all involved.”

So anything that involves the movement of goods and services from the country of origin to the country of destination across international waters, international frontiers, including by waters by air.

The NAGAFF chieftain said,through these logistics supply chain management and other auxiliary services, a lot of people have gainfully employed.

On whether NAGAFF has really achieved its vision and objectives with coming on board of the CRFFN and the way freight forwarding practice has been positioned so far across the seaports, airports and border stations, comrade Nwonu said: ”Right from inceotion, NAGAFF came with mission and vision. And that is why they have had this advocacy instinct in them. You see NAGAFF came to bring professionalism in the industry. And you know, we cannot continue to do things the same old ways. The world today has become a global village. Therefore, there is need for us to change from our old ways of doing things to new ways and in line with international best practice.

”Now when NAGAFF came on board one of its mandates or primary assignments was to asking freight forwarders to go back to school, to get themselves educated and get trained and retrained in the profession. And to achieve that we established NAGAFF Academy, where freight forwarders go to learn and study courses relating to freight forwarding and maritime. And I can tell you, as I am talking to you today, it was the effort of NAGAFF through CRFFN that we brought in the Redeemers University, where our members and other maritime stakeholders run weekend courses on freight forwarding, Transport Management, Port management and others. And I want to tell you that some of the members of our sister associations like Association of Licensed Customs Agents (ANLCA) are already partaking in such. So NAGAFF has .come of age.”

Speaking about the coming on board of the CRFFN as a regulatory body for the freight forwarding practice in Nigeria, Nwonu have this to say: ”Way back in 2006, NAGAFF started the advocacy for the establishment of a regulatory body for the practitioners.

On whether the day will be turned to a national day for Nigerian freight forwarders in future, Nwonu said, not a matter of planning that it has already become national day for Nigerian freight forwarders.

”It is not issue of planning, it is already declared a national day for the Nigerian freight forwarders.
It is already a national feaster. It is already declared freight forwarders day in Nigeria. It is not NAGAFF’s day, it is national day for freight forwarders. It is our day. Freight forwarders day. Yes, it is a day to celebrate professionalism in the maritime freight forwarding subsector of Nigerian economy. It a day to celebrate excellenHe said, when the issue of establishing CRFFN came up that NAGAFF sent a Bill proposing for the establishment of the CRFFN Act 2007.
”NAGAFF proposed a Bill seeking for the National Assembly. And even some people who called themselves clearing and forwarding agents, tried to kill the Bill at the National Assembly but by the grace of God they didn’t succeed.  And that is why today you can hear about CRFFN.

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