Invaders of ANLCA Secretariat must never go unpunished-National President …Mulls fresh chapter elections
The Association of Nigerian Licensed Customs Agents ANLCA has sworn that it will leave no stone unturned in ensuring that those who invaded its Secretariat and their sponsors are made to face the full wrath of the law.
Recall that suspected hoodlums numbering over 40 and armed with various dangerous weapons including guns, pistols, machete, charms had invaded the association’s secretariat at the early hours of October 6, 2020 in which stakeholders described as mission to kill and destroy, as they wreaked havoc on the Secretariat building.
Meanwhile, the association has urged all its chapters to prepare to elect their various chapter executives in line with their constitutional rights as guaranteed under the constitution of the association and disregard empty threats by some disgruntled individuals, who do not mean well for the association.
In a statement signed by its National President, Hon. Iju Tony Nwabunike, the association disclosed the National Executive Committee NECOM, in addition to arraigning the suspects before a court, has also petitioned several security agencies to ensure that the attackers and their sponsors are punished in line with the laws of the land.
He warned that the leadership of the association under his watch would neither allow itself to be cowed nor trapped in the misbehaviour of some disgruntled elements, who are bent on destroying the oldest and most organised Customs Brokers’ association in the country.
He also disclosed that the suspects arrested in connection with the attack have been charged to court and that the processes are being followed through to ensure that the law takes its course, adding that as a law abiding organisation, ANLCA will refrain from commenting on the matter that is in court, as that would amount to subjudice.
It was however gathered that moves by the association to evaluate and quantify the extent of damage on the Secretariat was stalled by the outbreak of the #ENDSARS protests, which paralysed economic activities in several cities across the country including Lagos.
The letter reads in part: “Following series of media inquiries, genuine concerns by members of ANLCA and members of the public, we find it imperative to issue a formal update on the attack on our Secretariat.
“The Gestapo style invasion, which took everyone working in the Secretariat unawares, resulted in robbery, looting and destruction of the association’s property while the invaders searched round for Iju Tony Nwabunike the National President and other members of the NECOM.
“Fortunately, most of the national officers they wanted physically to attack were not in the building during the raid that lasted for over 30 minutes before the very timely and life -saving intervention by Police officers from the Festac Police Station. To say that we the NECOM members escaped death is stating the obvious because the attackers were out for our lives.
“On sighting the Police, most of them fled while nine members of the gang were arrested with their guns, charms and other harmful objects. In their struggle and resistance against lawful arrest, the hoodlums injured a Police officer; Seargent Ababadariki F, who was hospitalised after the incident.
“As a law abiding organisation with a leadership that believes in God, we are grateful to our creator for saving us from an attempt to gruesomely murder us by persons whose desperation has been brought to the fore for all to see.
“NECOM is further carrying out our own independent investigation to truly ascertain the level of collateral damage to our facilities with a view to quantifying the destruction done in monetary terms including cash stolen by the hoodlums.
“Our association under my watch will continue to carry out our legitimate duties as enshrined in the ANLCA Supreme Constitution and we call on all our members across the country to go about their normal duties without fear, intimidation or allowing themselves to be incited against the legitimate leadership of the association.
“I also want to assure all our members that the NECOM under my headship will continue to negotiate and fight for the right of members so that they will keep carrying out their businesses without any form of threat and intimidation”