By Innocent Orok
A former Council Chairman of the Council for Regulation of Freight Forwarding in Nigeria (CRFFN), Fwdr Hakeem Olanrewaju has accused the Federal Government of corrupting the Council members through bogus yearly budgets figures , with nothing to show for it.
Olarenwaju who was the second Chairman to administered the Council has blown hot in a press statement issued today in Lagos. He was furious on the 2021 budget of which the Council was given over N2 billion Naira as capital project sum for this year. His statement reads,
“Approximately the amount used to kick- start the administrative life of the CRFFN between the year 2008 to 2012 ( of the first and second Governing Council) is in the average of N200m to N250m.
“Out of this approximated amount; staffs were recruited and salaries promptly paid, official vehicles were purchased, capacity building programs were conducted,. membership with FIATA formalized, office structures were rented across the zones and operational head offices rented in Lagos and Abuja. While, International Professional exchange programs were also attended to , among other achievements .
“Experiences has shown that administering a professional Council of our size was never a rocket science in terms of massive and over bloated yearly budgetary, as presently obtains.
“As a professional Regulatory Council and from what is obtainable else where amongst the comity of freight forwarding nation’s, we do not really need all this gigantic edifices (tagged headquarters & zonal administrative offices and institutes ) being put in place.
What governs a professional Council is the principle of discipline, transparency, moderation and prudent especially when it comes to financial management, and not the spirit of negligence, squandering and recklessness.
“Ideally in a viable and competitive freight forwarding Profession, most of the said on going projects are actually projects that the practitioners through visionary leadership of the CRFFN can easily attract through international donations via our international participation in the global freight forwarding advancement programs and empowerment schemes.
“In the local front, with an ideal financial administration, this said projects are achievable subject to Professional administrative planning, budgeting and execution via visionary leadership.
“As a professional Council, we are supposedly careful and conscious to budget and expense in likely equation and correspondence with our yearly income via yearly subscriptions, enforcement of regulatory sanctions, sales of professional publications, Professional levies, donations , corporate brand materials, etc?.
“It is disheartening to note that, 12 years after the registration of the CRFFN with the umbrella body, the FIATA, what we can point to the International body , who had conclude a trained the trainer program, followed by the accreditation of Professional training institutions across the geo Political Zones of the Nation, is an endless ongoing projects of the CRFFN.
“What a shame of a profession, even worse, when we discover that, even the CRFFN yearly budgetary is way far above that of FIATA yearly budgetary, what an irony of Professional inclination. Let me shock you, by saying that, the Government is massively corrupting the leadership of the freight forwarders cum the Practitioners, doing so in an obvious subtle manner aka over inflated project contracts and elephant projects.
“Consequently, the Practitioners now finds it much rewarding and most profitable to do everything humanly possible to get elected into the Governing Council rather than face its Professional Practices. This growing trends is dangerous and a professional albatross has to be stopped.
“In my mind this is rather a DELIBERATE Professional distraction caused by the government. What happens when another government comes to power and discovers that, this present trending of setting up edifices which in the future cannot be sustainable, for a prudent professional Practitioners whose activities are service related is a mere waste of public fund?
“This deliberate dubbing our legitimate Professional Council as a quango Professional Council by Government operatives has to stop. In due course we shall institute a process that will engender probity by the concerned authorities, ” the statement concludes.
Coming soon on this platform: Details of Hidden Deals in MARITIME AGENCIES BUDGET FOR 2021.