Battle for the soul of ANLCA
… As Western Zone chapter elections hold Jan 24
The much-anticipated election of chairmen and other officials of the nine chapters under the Western Zone of the Association of Nigerian Licensed Customs Agents (ANLCA) has finally been set for Thursday, 24thJanuary, 2013, with the gladiators perfecting last-minute plots to outwit each other.
The election scheduled to hold at the Trade Fair Complex, Lagos-Badagry Expressway, Lagos,will see about 74 bonafide members of the association slug it out for various chapter positions ranging from the position of Chairman to that of the Public Relations Officer.
The chairmanship positions of Apapa and Tin-Can Island ports chapters are in serious contention with the candidates executing grandiose flag-off campaigns.
At Apapa, incumbent Secretary and Managing Director of Obokun Freight Forwarders Limited, Olumide Francis Fakanlu, is slogging it out with Managing Director of Femson Nigeria Limited, Femi Anifowoshe, for the possible emergence of the chapter’s first non-Igbo Chairman in more than two decades.
Other contenders for the Chairmanship position are Dom Onyeka; Chinedu Ngwube, who was one-time interim Chairman of the Chapter; and Osy Ezenweiyinya.
Notably, this would be the first time in a long while that non-Igbos would be contesting for the chairmanship position of ANLCA Apapa Chapter.
It would be recalled that preceding the out-going Chairman of Apapa Chapter, Sir John Ofobike, former Chairman Registration Committee of the Council for the Regulation of Freight Forwarding in Nigeria (CRFFN), Chief Peter Obih, served two terms as Chairman of the chapter, which he took over from one-time CRFFN Governing Council Chairman, Tony Iju Nwabunike.
The battle at the Tin-Can Island Port Chapter is no-less-interesting, as three candidates are jostling to dislodge the incumbent; Kayode Collins Farinto.
One-time Chairman of the chapter, Prince Kayode Onyinlola is plotting to stage a comeback, while Akintoye Ojo Peter and Sonniel Onichie Ebonyem are also eyeing the position.
Farinto’s embattled deputy, Ada Ebubedike, has dropped out of the chairmanship race and has decided to re-contest as Vice Chairman.
Farinto, however, remains the candidate to beat at the chapter.
Prince Bola Adeniran, known as Obama, is getting a run for his money and may lose his seat to either Sunday Oyebola or Elder Samuel Obe, who are seen as popular contenders for the post.
The Kirikiri Lighter Terminal (KLT) Chapter is not left out in the power play as serving Chairman of the chapter, Alloy Anokwuru, faces stiff opposition from Bayo Oyekangun.
Chairmanship candidates for Lilypond and Ikorodu chapters, Chief Lawrence Uba and Chief Tomi Aloba, respectively, are expected to have a sooth sail and be returned unopposed.
Ditto Timothy Ayokunle Abel at Idiroko Chapter.
Incumbent Chairman of Seme Border Chapter, Patrick Ozobialu, is, however, not so lucky, as he faces opposition from Alhaji Bisiriyu Lasisi and Onyekachi Sule Ojinma, while Livinus Agubuzo, incumbent Murtala Muhammed International Airport Chapter Chairman battles Nze Aloysius Igwe for a second term.
The Western Zone chapter elections have already polarised the association and divided it along ethnic lines.
The Igbo in the ANLCA fold in November last year threatened to boycott the elections.
Speaking with SHIPS & PORTS DAILY, leader of the Igbo Maritime Forum (IMF), Chief Peter Obih, said that the Igbo in ANLCA are dissatisfied with the procedures set by the Association’s Electoral Commission (ASECO) in screening voters and candidates for the elections ealier scheduled to hold in December.
Obih expressed dissatisfaction with the elections timetable then released by ASECO, noting that the Igbo in the association, with the backing of IMF, have resolved to boycott the elections, except more time is allowed for preparations and campaign by contestants.
“We are calling for a six-month extension of time for us to get ourselves prepared for the election, so we are calling for a NEC meeting; an emergency NEC meeting for us to prepare for the election. Either three months or six months should be given to us as extension for us to get prepared for the election. As far as Igbos are concerned in this Western Zone, there is no election in ANLCA. We won’t partake in any election, they should do what we ask them to do or we boycott it,” Obih said.
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