OPEN LETTER TO HIS EXCELLENCY, THE PRESIDENT AND COMMANDER IN CHIEF OF THE ARMED FORCES, FEDERAL REPUBLIC OF NIGERIA, ASIWAJU BOLA AHMED TINUBU, GCFR.
RE- PROPOSED DISPOSAL OF OVERTIME CARGOES IN NIGERIA PORTS AND GOVERNMENT WAREHOUSES IN NIGERIA:
PLANS TO ONCE AGAIN ALLOCATE CONSIGNMENTS TO FAMILY MEMBERS, FRIENDS AND BUSINESS ASSOCIATES.
We bring you felicitations and want to thank you for the energy, determination and sincerity to impact positively on our economy by removing subsidies on petroleum products. Thank you very much, Mr. President.
Sir, I want to start this letter by saying that the hyenas and vultures are gathering again to emasculate the business and destroy the livelihoods of Nigerian Importers and Freight Forwarders.
Information reaching us says that plans are underway to sell overtime cargoes to families and friends by leaders of Nigeria Ports Authority- NPA, Nigeria Customs Service – NCS, and some officials of the Federal Ministry of Transportation.
Just a few years back a certain committee of civil servants was given the mandate to sell overtime cargoes in our ports and they went for bazaar, allocating the overtime goods to members of their families and circle of friends .
The small numbers sold to the public were only for the paltry sum of N1m and N2m paid per 20ft and 40ft containers respectively while between N2m and N4m went to the private pockets. Meanwhile, owners of these containers that are generally accepted class of goods marked as safe imports were ready to pay between N3m & N5m to the Federation Account which can generate Billions of Naira in revenue for the government.
Meetings held with officials of Importers Association of Nigeria, Freight Forwarders handling the clearing of these goods show the willingness to pay directly to the Federation Account any reasonable amount government is willing to sell their containers to them than going through third party who are essentially families, friends and proxies of these officials mentioned above .
In view of the above we want to plead with Mr. President to set up a Special Committee whose members shall be drawn from Freight Forwarders, Representatives of the Association of Nigeria Customs Brokers -ANCB, Importers Association of Nigeria -IMAN, Nigeria Ports Authority NPA and Nigeria Shippers Council to be headed by a senior Official from the office of the Secretary to the Government of Federation so that these items shall be sold to their owners so as to ameliorate the sufferings of the importers and their families; many of whom have died in the course of the impoundments of these goods .
This will bring succor and relief to these importers, their families and dependants who will be rendered totally poor if the containers are shared among the so called stakeholders who will end up sharing them to their immediate families and friends.
Nigerians have already started feeling the impact of your leadership and the different trajectory you want to toe to deliver democratic dividends to all NIGERIANs irrespective of ethnic or religious divide .
His Excellency sir, do not allow criminal minded officials to create rooms for opposition element to biker by allowing this unsavory activities being masterminded by some people to cause disharmony.
Mr. President sir, please do not allow these selfish individuals to define your government as a reckless and divisive one.
Accept the assurances of our highest esteemed regards.
Alh Bayero Lawal
Association of Nigeria Customs Brokers ANCB