Mr. Isiaka Raji Ahutu
Mr. Ahutu rose to the position of Assistant General Manager during his 14-year career with NNSL.
Interview of Mr. Isiaka Ahutu
Highlights of his interview
Born in Igarra, Ako-Edo Local Government of Edo State; native of Kogi State; early education; university education; employment in NNSL; memorable first meeting with Mr. E A Adeniyi; gift of N7.00 and how he spent it; one of twenty graduate trainees employed in one fell swoop in 1981; the politics of getting the promised overseas training attached to the employment; 10 of them later sent to Germany, the rest to Liverpool; mission, to understudy shipping practices in these hubs; 1 month stay overseas, experiences, bought first car during the trip; deployed to Lagos, then Warri as Claims Officer 1 on return; the politics of working as Claims Officer under the discretion of the Port Agent, Mr. Olaleye; the activities of NNSL Port Agencies, their administration; details of claims in shipping, short land and discrepancy; assigned to handle containers, later allowed to become Claims Officer; the problem of two cars landed at Warri Port instead of consignee’s demand for landing at Delta Steel Company jetty; his activities in reorganizing the Claims department; became Export-Import Officer in addition to Claims; problems he had in 1983 with indemnity form administration; consequently moved to Canvassing department; the cargo flow, palm produce, cocoa, rubber, project cargoes, etc; the problem which arose by his processing of crude rubber in sheets export shipment; face-off among colleagues arising from envy; petition to Lagos headquarter to intervene; recalled to Lagos with the Port Agent; deployed to NEPH (NNSL, Elder Dempster Line, Palm Line and Hoegh Line working group); problems he had with management officers because of his criticizing the corruption of NNSL ships going to bunker in Warri after operations in Lagos; his syndicate which organized petitions against Mr. Oladitan, the General Manager; the improvement in chandling operation as a result; the achievements of Col. Gwadabe as Managing Director; the petition that caused his transfer to Kano Office in 1987; the cargo flow from Kano, and other activities; spent five years in Kano office; the personal benefits of the Kano transfer; re-deployed to Lagos in 1991; his problems with Mr. Gerald Chidi as a result of Chidi’s face-off with Solomon Nyoriere; the allegation of illegal sale of containers at Kaduna and how it was resolved; perceived enemies in the company; his perception of how matters degenerated leading to the liquidation of the company; his promotion to Assistant General Manager, Human Resources; the investigation after the death of General Gumel which uncovered his loot of N2 billion; the progress with the pension scheme of the NNSL ex-staffers; the prospects of returning Nigeria to ocean shipping.