With regards to acts and verbal wars geared towards the ejection, dismissal, and dethronement of Hon. Iju Tony Nwabunike as National President of Association of Nigerian Licensed Customs Agents (ANLCA), a freight Forwarder, and National Financial Secretary of Association of Igbo Maritime Practitioners in Nigeria (ASIMPIN), Hon. Isaac Ndukwe (Okwadike), has called for a stay of such acts and rallies support for Nwabunike.

Recall that a court seating in Lagos recently ordered the ANLCA President and his Executives to stop parading themselves in office following a long-standing suit filed against them by certain disgruntled members of the Association.

Since he was elected into office as the National President of the Association two years ago, Hon. Iju Tony Nwabunike has been in and out of court, his tenure has been constantly bombarded with acrimonious criticisms coupled with media attacks by some ANLCA members who have resolved never to recognize him as their National President. However, some of them have roundly condemned the election that brought Nwabunike into office, describing it as fraudulent.

In a brief exclusive with our correspondence recently, Hon. Isaac Ndukwe out rightly condemned those who have vowed not to see Nwabunike succeed as ANLCA President, saying that their motive is a sinister one. Honourable Iju Tony Nwabunike emerged as National President of ANLCA in a very tough election, beating his opponent, Chief Emenike Nwokoji, in Enugu, Enugu State two years ago.

In his words, “Amazingly, among the pack of these critics and detractors of Hon. Iju Tony Nwabunike are ANLCA chieftains of Igbo extraction. It is indeed a disturbing situation, why should a true Igbo indigene who really sucked his mother’s breast take it upon himself to work against his own brother who is in such an exalted position. If Prince Olayiwola Shittu as a Yoruba man successfully completed his tenure of two terms in office with the full support of both his people and that of the Igbos, why not Iju Tony Nwabunike? Why has his election as ANLCA’s President become a sacrilege? Why won’t he have some peace and quiet as he pilots the affairs of the Association? Why is his own people so embittered about his leadership? To me, it looks like spiritual bewitchment”.

Continuing, the National Financial Secretary of ASIMPIN urged those kicking against Nwabunike’s Administration to have a rethink and sheath their swords, ” Hon. Iju Tony Nwabunike should be given the support he needs to succeed as ANLCA President. Those Association Chieftains of Igbo extraction denigrating his office and insulting his person should bear in mind that one cannot sell his brother and expect his buyers to trust him. Washing their dirty linens in public will not do them any good since there is no difference that cannot be resolved. It will also be recorded against them that they frustrated the administration of their own brother, and l think such record can never pass for a good commendation except in the coven of witches”.

Continuing, Hon. Isaac Ndukwe (Okwadike) passionately called on well-meaning Igbo indigenes to call those antagonizing Hon. Iju Tony Nwabunike to order, saying injustice to one is an injustice to all. He also added that at a very critical time like this, the Maritime Industry needs to be pointed in the right direction by leaders of various maritime associations. “Enough of this unnecessary distraction, we need positive change in the Industry and not antagonism. Clearing Agents are not having the best of times, we need a lot of issues affecting us to be tabled and addressed accordingly. So they should allow him to concentrate and join others to proffer solutions to some of these lingering issues”.

Concluding, he called upon ASIMPIN to fully intervene and put an end to the unnecessary distraction of their illustrious son, and also reminded them that if he fails as President of ANLCA due to unwarranted antagonism, it means the Igbos failed to deliver. He urged them to give Nwabunike the same support they gave to Prince Olayiwola Shittu during his tenure as ANLCA President.