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The Comptroller-General of Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), retired Col. Hameed Ali has made known that the Nigerian government closed its borders in order to protect its economic interests, amongst other pressing issues. 

Addressing border stakeholders during a meeting held on Thursday, September 26, 2019 at SemeAli admitted that the border closure was aimed at protecting the country’s economy, saying it was never intended to hurt anyone.  

[READ MORE: Border Closure: Traders risk losses as 500 truckloads get stranded]

Ali said, “Our interest is to make sure that our country is secure, the well-being of our people is ensured, and our economy is secure. The step we have taken is in the interest of Nigeria, the step is not to hurt anybody but to protect our own interests as a nation.” 

Seme Border partial closure to restrict rice importation – Buhari

According to Ali, a lot of things had gone wrong regarding compliance with transit of goods. The customs boss explained that the border closure was to ensure that things were streamlined so that all stakeholders could be back to doing the right things. 

“The idea is to ensure that the protocol that is involved in transit of goods and trade facilitation is adhered to so that we will all live and complement each other. The operation is undertaken to ensure that we get things back in perspective; we know the right thing, it is well written, we are all aware of it, we used to practise it, so we must go back to that,” he added. 

Nairametrics reported that Nigeria’s borders in two regions were shut down at the instance of a directive from the Office of the National Security Adviser (NSA), owing to the state of insecurity in the country.   

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[READ ALSO: Nigeria’s Inflation rate drops to 11.02% in August 2019 despite border closures]

The Seme Border, which is the busiest border between Nigeria and the Benin Republic, was one of the borders partially shut down by President Muhammadu Buhari to restrict the importation of rice into Nigeria. 

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Famuyiwa Damilare is a trained journalist. He holds a Higher National Diploma (HND) in Mass Communication at the prestigious Nigerian Institute of Journalism (NIJ). Damilare is an innovative and transformational leader with broad-based expertise in journalism and media practice at large. He has explored his proven ability in the areas of reporting, curating and generating contents, creatively establishing social media engagements, and mobile editing of videos. It is safe to say he’s a multimedia journalist.


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