Home Maritime Nwabunike Blames ANLCA Crisis on BOT

Nwabunike Blames ANLCA Crisis on BOT

by timenews
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…declares the Board illegal

…ready for new election

Pearl Ngwama


The President of the Association of Nigeria Licensed Customs Agents (ANLCA), Hon. Tony Iju Nwabunike, has blamed the lingering crisis in the Association on the Board of Trustees (BOT).


This is just as he declared that the Board was illegal and unrecognised, adding that his administration was set for another Board election before the end of the year, to put ANLCA on the right pedestal.


Nwabunike who made this declaration in a recent press Conference at the ANLCA’s Secretariat in Amuwo Odofin, Lagos, said the tenure of the Board expired on February 10th, 2020 and therefore seized to gain recognition.


According to him, ANLCA had nine former Board members, four of who had voluntarily stepped down from office after the expiration of its tenure in February, while the rest five had continued to parade themselves as the BOT members.


He accused the five of them; Taiwo Mustapha (Chairman), Taye Oyeniyi, Ernest Elochukwu, Dennis Okafor and Dayo Azeez as the ones behind the rocking crisis in ANLCA.


The ANLCA President maintained that Mustapha’s plan for tenure elongation through the back door would not see the light of the day because his tenure and that of his counterparts had ended.


He rather advised them to be ready to contest in the soon coming elections if they so wished to continue as BOT members, stressing that the Association would hold its election before the end of the year, shortly after its Annual General Meeting (AGM) holding in a fortnight.


“Already, three people have picked forms from Lagos, Abuja and Kano,” he said.


Nwabinike accused Mustapha and his Group of working with some chapters’ chairmen in the Western Zone to frustrate his administration, stating that the Board members had been feeding the Chapter chairmen with false promises that they will allow them to continue in office, which was against the Constitution of ANLCA.


The President described the election that brought the chairmen as illegal, adding that once the National Executive Council Members (NECOM) meeting holds, there will be a new election in the Zone.


Blaming the illegal Board for the entire crisis in the Association, he announced that it had dragged the current (NECOM) which he superintends as the President to court eight times in its two years in office.


While vowing that his administration would remain focused, he said he was no longer going to tolerate any further insurrection from the Mustapha’s Group.


“My Council Members, especially my Vice-President, are not happy with me for treating these issues with levity.


“They are angry that I have treated these dissidents with kid’s glove which they said has made the crisis to fester for this long. But now I say enough is enough,” Nwabunike retorted.


Though debunking that there was no tribal war in the Association, he traced the genesis of the crisis in the BOT to ethnicity and fears that the Igbos were taking over ANLCA.


“Anyone that tells you that Yoruba and Igbos are fighting in ANLCA, it is not true, there are plans to destabilise this NECOM from day one, but we have refused to succumb to their pressure.


“When Olayiwola Shittu was President, Taiwo Mustapha was Head of BOT as Co-ordinator and the ASECO Chairman was Mukaila, they were Yorubas, yet nobody raised an eyebrow.


“Also in the first term of Henry Njoku as Board Chairman, Elochukwu was the President and nobody actually raised tribal issues.


“They have taken us to court eight times but we have been on the defence. They used all machineries to truncate this administration; the latest was the attack on 6th of October 2020, about 40 men with guns attacked our Secretariat,” Nwabunike narrated.


He further recalled that the election that brought in Taiwo Mustapha and his Group was held a day to his inauguration as the President, without his knowledge.


He said: “I was not comfortable with the Board holding elections on the eve of my inauguration, don’t forget that I am also a member of the Board before I won the election and I never knew they did election until after my inauguration.


“I told them that this was too sudden, and what was the exigency, but they said if Igbo man becomes the President, the Board Chairman must be a Yoruba man, I appealed to them for time, and that was the genesis of the problem.


“I appealed to Taiwo Mustapha for them to re-conduct the BOT elections, I even assured him that I would support him to emerge as Chairman, but he preferred to be Chairman of BOT that is not recognised.


Taiwo Mustapha is a patholigical liar and the most unstable person I have ever dealt with, when he tells you something today, he goes ahead and implements something else.


He pointed out that he was the most insulted and abused President of ANLCA but that henceforth he would not condone rebels of the Mustapha’s camp.


“In few weeks time the BOT elections would hold. Let them keep going to court for injunction, we would keep giving them 14 days until it expires while we do the right thing.


“The only soft landing I can give them is for them to go and obtain forms, if they know they are still interested to become BOT members, so that they can join other three members who have so far obtained their forms.”


Asked why Association members seemed to eye being members of the Board, Nwabunike said the BOT was significant during elections so people felt they could bribe their ways to positions through them.


On his part, the Vice President of ANLCA, Dr. Kayode Farinto, blamed the immediate past National President, Prince Olayiwola Shittu, for fueling the crisis in the Association, adding that all his lieutenants were the ones trying from day one to ensure that NECOM never enjoyed their government.


“Shittu will tell you that he sees no evil and hears no evil but indications showed that everyone causing this crisis was always sitting with him and all his friends, but he refused to talk to them,” Farinto said.

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