Regular readers of this column will certainly require little or no education about the controversy that has dogged the Council for the Regulation of Freight Forwarding in Nigeria (CRFFN) since inception. To remind, CRFFN was a creation of former President Olusegun Obasanjo’s administration. It was an integral part of Nigeria’s port reform programme which was anchored on dock labour reform, restructuring of Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), Customs reforms and freight forwarders reform.
Monday, 25 September 2017
While Benin Republic and China are systematically undermining Nigeria economically, Turkey seems interested in the destruction of the precious lives of our citizens. Why the Nigerian government allows its tiny neighbour to willfully authorize the passage of banned items into its territory at the expense of its economy leaves much to the imagination. The government of Benin Republic is clearly behind the smuggling of goods, including life-threatening goods, into Nigeria. The Nigerian government, through some of its top officials including the Minister of Agriculture Chief Audu Ogbeh and the Comptroller-General of Customs, Hameed Ali, have spoken severally about the havoc wreaked by Benin Republic on the Nigerian economy and on the health of Nigerians.
Monday, 21 August 2017
Monday, 3 July 2017
While addressing a town hall meeting of political stakeholders in Ondo State shortly before the 2015 general election, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, then Vice Presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), assured Nigerians that General Muhammadu Buhari's government – if voted into office – would slash tariffs on imported vehicles.
Osinbajo made the promise in the face of a 350% hike in the Customs duties payable by Nigerians on imported new and fairly used vehicles by the PDP government.
"We do not agree that there should be high tariffs on imported cars whether new or old ones because Nigeria is not producing cars for now.
Monday, 19 June 2017
The motor park mentality, which is a recipe for chaos, has found its way into our airports. It has always been there but current trends reveal it is assuming a worrisome proportion.
Travellers will readily attest to irritating solicitations by all sorts of characters canvassing patronage or gifts at the airport’s screening point, passengers’ waiting area and in the toilet. These undue solicitations happen at even the very best of our airport terminals.
Monday, 12 June 2017
The zeal and energy with which Nigeria's Acting President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, is working and tackling national issues should not come as a surprise to anyone. I've always been awed by how any one person could rise to the peak of his profession, his career and his religious calling. In academics, he rose to become a professor, which is the summit of scholarship; as a lawyer, he rose to the enviable rank of Senior Advocate of Nigeria and as a Christian, he pastors a big branch of the Redeemed Christian Church of God.
Osinbajo is a genius of our time. Just listening to him talk will leave even the most devious of his critics in admiration. He knows what to say at the right time. His words are always soothing and his steps ever so sure.
Monday, 8 May 2017
When President Umaru Yar'Adua flagged off dredging of the lower section of River Niger on September 10, 2009, the euphoria that greeted the ceremony resulted from the belief that the project would open up commercial activities on Nigeria's section of West Africa's principal waterway.
Yar'Adua's government expended a princely N43 billion to dredge the river ostensibly to open it up for socio-economic activities. The government also promised to build seven ports along the banks of the river. The ports were to be located in Agenebode, Idah, Yenagoa, Baro, Lokoja, Aguta and Ogbabe. Onitsha River Port was also to be rehabilitated and expanded to accommodate a river training institute. The River Niger dredging was to cover a distance of 572 Kilometres from Warri, in Delta State, to Baro in Niger State to ensure all year round usage.
Monday, 24 April 2017
Tuesday, 28 February 2017
While one was struggling to digest the shocking revelation that former state oil chief executive Andrew Yakubu callously and criminally hid $10 million (more than N3 billion) in a mud house in the slum of Kaduna, news of the recovery of 17 exotic cars and assorted vehicles from a premises belonging to former Customs Comptroller-General, Dikko Inde Abdullahi, created a backflow of stomach acid and juices into my oesophagus. The resultant metallic taste is sickening.
What is wrong with Nigerian leaders? How could a man, in his right senses and frame of mind, seize other people's vehicles, in the guise of fighting smuggling and lock up the merchandise in a remote location, gathering dust? The pervasive poverty mentality compels people to steal and store up what they will never need or use in their entire life.
Monday, 20 February 2017
Many in government carry on as if the private sector is a nuisance. They talk down on the private sector, criticize and do all within their powers to drag down private sector operators. This is one posture I find a bit confusing and incomprehensible.
The evidence is clear; the private sector is the engine of growth. Successful businesses drive growth, create jobs and pay the taxes that finance services and investment. In developing countries, the private sector generates 90 per cent of jobs, funds 60 per cent of all investments and provides more than 80 per cent of government revenues.