WCO petition: Why I apologised to ANLCA Exco-Farinto
Vice President of the Association of Nigerian Licensed Customs Agents ANLCA, Dr. Kayode Farinto has declared that his decision to tender an unreserved apology to the national executive committee NECOM of the association over a recent petition he wrote to the World Customs Organisation WCO is because he truly erred.
The VP had in the petition dated August 3, 2020 with reference no. ANLCA/WCO/VOL042/08/020, accused Nigeria’s Customs Administration of operating differential value for imported products in the country, which he claimed was not in line with international best practice.
The National President of the association, Iju Tony Nwabunike had queried him over the petition which he addressed to the Secretary-General of the WCO on alleged imposition of value by the Nigeria Customs Service without authorisation; which embarrassed the association.
The President had in the query asked the Vice to explain why disciplinary action should not be taken against him for writing the petition without authorisation in total violation of section three (a), (d) and (e) of the association’s constitution. He had also cited section seven, sub-section two (c) of ANLCA constitution, which provides that the Vice President is the Chairman of the National Disciplinary Committee of the association and he was henceforth, stripped of function to pave way for disciplinary action to be taken against him.
Speaking at a press conference jointly addressed in Lagos recently by the President, the VP and National Secretary, Mukaila Abdulazeez, tendered an unreserved apology to the association, saying he realised how wrong he was to have written the WCO without any authorisation.
He said: “Ideally, I should have sought the permission of the president before writing the letter to the WCO but I must apologise to him. I want to let you all (the media) know that we don’t have any problem in ANLCA. I am just the vice president and to step in when the president is not around.
“We don’t have any problem and from today we are moving forward. The problem we have in this part of the world is that some people when they err they find it difficult to say sorry I am not one of those because I am an enlightened person we don’t have problem”.
The Vice President who gave a Yoruba proverb which, resolves around the harmonious relationship between the teeth and the tongue, argued that sometimes there are bound to be disagreements, which are settled without injuring any of both parts of the body.
He also ruled out any possibility of infighting among the national executives of the association, charged the media to report to the world that the executives are united more than ever before to fight a common cause.
Meanwhile, the President, who responded to the apology by the Vice, argued that it was human to err but divine to forgive, adding that the VP’s unreserved apologies had been accepted and forgiven. He argued that queries or memos, remain internal mechanisms to seek explanations to resolve issues and not necessarily any form of punishment.
He noted that the import of the query was not to gag other national officers from writing or granting interviews on behalf of the association rather that the procedure of seeking and receiving permission must be duly followed so that there will be coordination and focus as against the practice of making conflicting statements in the public, which is a sign of a divided house.