December 9, 2022

Ugochukwu, felicitates with Muslims on Sallah celebration

Comrade Ray Ugochukwu

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*Tasks FG on developmental policies for maritime sector

* Applauds MAJAN members for successful programme on VIN valuation

(Report by Udeme Clement)

The President, Maritime Journalists Association of Nigeria (MAJAN), Comrade Ray Ugochukwu, is felicitating with Muslims across Nigeria on the special occasion of Sallah celebration in the country.

He called on all well-meaning Nigerians, both Christians and Muslims to unite as one family and tackle the prevalent security threat in the country.

Comrade Ugochukwu, a renowned writer and seasoned Journalist, sent his greetings to Muslim Brothers and Sisters, in his goodwill message issued on MAJAN platform today.

Speaking further, Ugochukwu called on the Federal Government to focus on policies and programmes that will stimulate tangible growth in the maritime industry, in order to diversify the economy for optimum development.

Comrade Ugochukwu emphasised that the maritime industry has potentials to reposition the nation’s economy, like what obtains in advanced countries, if adequately harnessed.

In the same vein, Ugochukwu applauded all MAJAN members for the successful hosting of the just concluded talkshow on VIN-valuation policy.

According to him, the Communique issued at the end of the programme has been widely accepted by various agencies in the maritime industry, as the document has very important inputs made by Customs Brokers, Freight Forwarders, Clearing Agents and stakeholders in the industry.

Recall that on June 28, 2022, MAJAN organised a round-table discussion on impacts of VIN-valuation policy implementation. The programme brought together representatives from Association of Nigerian Licensed Customs Agents (ANLCA), National Association of Government Approved Freight Forwarders (NAGAFF), African Association of Professional Freight Forwarders and Logistics in Nigeria (APFFLON), National Council of Managing Directors of Licensed Customs Agents (NCMDLCA) and maritime journalists from different media organisations.

Some of the recommendations made include; urgent need for Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) to harmonise its operations to ensure that non-standard vehicles are accommodated in the valuation portal. Provision of valuation chart and data for all categories of vehicles, to serve as a guide for freight forwarders.

The Vehicle Registration (V-REG) firm was advised to make itself accessible and put its house in order, by upgrading its system to meet the required needs of customers.
In the interim, NCS was urged to operate VIN-valuation and manual systems side by side, until everything is harmonised for seamless operations. It was agreed that
age limit for vehicles should be12 years, as previously agreed before introduction of VIN Valuation scheme.
10% yearly depreciation value of vehicles should be factored into VIN-valuation system.

Also, it was emphasised that
standard automobiles like Mercedes, M Class, some brands of Toyota, BMW and Lexus with 17 digits, which are currently not inputted into Customs portal, be captured in the VIN-valuation portal to avoid discrepancies in the system.

Also, Ugochukwu said MAJAN members must be ready to organis more programmes on vital economic issues that will add value to the maritime sector and even serve as a working document for government and lawmakers. He maintained that Journalists have a crucial role to play in national development by setting agenda for government.

Recall that MAJAN has done series of programmes in the industry and VIN-valuation is just one of such events. Only last month, the same Association organised a capacity building programme for its members on Customs modernisation to upscale their competences in reporting activities of Customs.

Last year January, the same MAJAN organised a talkshow on ‘Apapa traffic gridlock’. In February last year, just a month after MAJAN programme, Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), introduced the E-Call Up System to ease the perennial traffic crisis on ports access roads.

That was not all.
In continuation of its advocacy for a better maritime sector,
MAJAN on April 2021, organised a ‘Summit’ on Apapa traffic gridlock, at Rock-View Apapa, which drew stakeholders and participants from various agencies.

Other programmes organised by MAJAN recently include ‘Challenges Facing Bonded Terminal Operators, Freight Forwarding in the 21st Century’ and a special Congress.

Today, it is on record that MAJAN remains the only group that successfully organised a roadshow on the ‘Dangers of Apapa Traffic’. The roadshow, which lasted over 11 hours, began by 7am at Mile-2 bridge, as members walked from Mile -2 to Apapa, up to NPA office at Marina, Governor’s office at Alausa-Ikeja; and finally closed at the premises of MiTV by 7pm.

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