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Business

NANTS urge FG to look into seizure of legitimate goods during border closure

NANTS has appealed to the FG to investigate complaints of genuine traders whose goods and containers were seized since border closure.

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NANTS urge FG to look into seizure of legitimate goods during border closure

The National Association of Nigerian Traders (NANTS) has urged the Nigerian Government to inaugurate a committee to look into the seizure of legitimate goods and containers by Customs during the border closure.

This was disclosed by NANTS President, Dr Ken Ukaoha, in an interview on Tuesday in Abuja. Ukaoha warned that most of the seized goods could have expired by now as over 70% of the seized goods were agro products, especially those that were bound for export.

READ: Border closure retaliation: Ghanaian traders union shuts Nigerian shops, to clamp down on more 

NANTS said Nigerian traders had legitimate goods valued at billions with expiry dates seized alongside smuggled goods when Nigeria shut its land borders in August 2019.

They added that goods valued at N240 billion were seized, while goods valued at N600 billion were in Benin Republic, citing that well over 1000 trucks were still stranded at the borders.

READ: Border Closure: Open border for all not only Dangote Cement – Atedo Peterside

  • “On the goods that were stranded since Aug. 20, 2019 when the borders were shut down, we are sadly noting and perhaps calling on government to see ways of looking into some of the recommendations that we made. That government should come up with a committee that will document in a proper manner the list of goods and items and the containers (vessels) as well as haulage vehicles carrying those goods that have been stranded since the border was closed.
  • “The committee should also document the number and the names of those vehicles, true owners of those wares and commodities seized, then the appropriate locations. These documentations will help us and everyone to see transparency and help government, so that everybody will see how transparent the government is in her dealings.
  • “The reason we are seeking for this proper documentation is that there is need for government to consider the owners of goods that were stranded, especially where these goods are genuine goods under genuine transactions.”

READ: Despite billions on agriculture, food inflation up by 108% since 2015

Ukaoha mentioned that the Mfun Border in Cross River which was declared open recently has not been fully operational, as operations in other ports have not picked up operations yet.

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He added that most traders and manufacturers took loans to conduct Business and NANTS wants to know how government will come in to assist and compensate them.

  • “Out of the borders that were shut down, four had been ordered to be reopened by the President. But sadly for us, out of the four, Mfun border in Cross River is still not fully opened to the public, and the other ones are still partially opened. Our members in Mfun informed us that the border officials, immigration essentially, complained that they were yet to receive signals from their headquarters. So, that place remains shut down.
  • “The two in the Northern axis and the one in Seme have partial opened in the sense that activities have not picked up and movement of goods and services have not been lifted the way they used to be. But we are hoping and believing that perhaps preparations are in top gear.”

READ: Nigeria’s trade sector fall into double dip recession

What you should know 

  • Nairametrics reported in October 2019, that the Federal Government (FG) of Nigeria ordered the complete closure of Nigeria’s borders, placing a ban on both legitimate and illegitimate movement of goods in and out of the country.
  • President Muhammadu Buhari, 2 weeks ago, ordered the immediate reopening of four of Nigeria’s land borders, over a year after they were all shut.
  • CSL Stockbrokers told Nairametrics that “the last GDP numbers announced also showed a contraction of the trade sector (down 12.1% y/y). We note the steep contraction in the trade sector GDP is reflective of not only covid-19 related pressures but also adverse trade policies such as closure of land borders.”

READ: Border closure not reason for Ghanaians maltreating Nigerian Traders – Abike Dabiri

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Business

FG declares Wednesday, Thursday public holidays

The Federal Government has declared Wednesday 12th and Thursday 13th May as public holidays to mark the 2021 Eid-ul-Fitr celebration.

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The Federal Government has declared Wednesday 12th and Thursday 13th May as public holidays to mark the 2021 Eid-ul-Fitr celebration.

This was disclosed in a social media statement issued by Dr. Shuaib Belgore, the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Interior, on behalf of the Minister, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola on Monday.

What the Minister said

The Minister of Interior, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, while making the declaration on behalf of the FG today in Abuja, congratulated the Muslim faithful on this occasion and called on all Nigerians, at home and abroad to use the period of this year’s Eidul-Fitr celebration to pray for peace, stability and economic transformation in the land.

Aregbesola who believes that development cannot thrive in a rancorous atmosphere, urged all Nigerians to be law-abiding and embrace the spirit of love, self-discipline, kindness and tolerance, as taught by the Holy Prophet Mohammed (Peace Be Upon Him). He also called on all security agencies in the country to be more courageous and patriotic to surmount the ongoing battle against resurging insecurity and activities of criminal elements in Nigeria.

He assured that the resolve of the President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration to end the scourge of crime and criminality in the country and restore peace to every nook and cranny of Nigeria was sacrosanct.

“This administration will not be deterred in its efforts, until every Nigerian and resident of the country, is free to move around without fear of any threat to his/her life and property. We are therefore putting necessary measures and strategies in place to strengthen the stability of the country as well as ensuring economic prosperity of our dear nation,” he emphasised.

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Business

Insecurity: Police to investigate threats by IPOB, Oodua Republic agitators in Lagos

The Lagos State Police Commissioner has revealed that threats by IPOB and Oodua Republic have come under its intelligence radar.

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The Nigerian Police says it will investigate threats made by separatist groups including the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) and agitators of Oodua Republic to attack soft targets in Lagos.

This was disclosed by Hakeem Odumosu, Commissioner of Police in Lagos State in a meeting to discuss insecurity in the state at Alausa in Ikeja, on Monday, according to a Vanguard report.

What the Police is saying about alleged IPOB and Oodua Republic threats in Lagos

“Our intelligence report revealed that, most miscreants now: Use abandoned buildings as hideouts and in most cases, initiation camp, use uncompleted buildings, dwelling house and hotels to hibernate before and after the commission of a crime,” the Police Chief said.

Furthermore, the threat of IPOB to attack soft targets in Lagos is equally being put on the radar of the command intelligence gathering and other security services in the state. Strategies are being put in place to neutralize their activities.

Similarly, the command has taken notice of agitators for the Oodua Republic by some Yoruba separatist groups and the threats to disrupt law and order in the state. 24 of these groups have been identified and are being closely monitored.

The command is using this medium to solicit for the support of all and sundry to be vigilant at all times and report any suspicious person or movement to security agencies. Let us adopt the slogan of “when you see something, say something,” he added.

What you should know

Today, the Lagos State Police Command said in a statement that: “Increase in robbery incidents were as a result of people migrating from troubled states down to Lagos. The government and relevant security agencies including RRS are doing their best in protecting members of the public.”

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