The Oasis Reporters
December 9, 2020
President Muhammadu Buhari says the nation’s land borders that were shut in August 2019 will be reopened soon. Though he did not give a specific date to effect it.
Speaking during a meeting with governors of the 36 states on Tuesday, the president said the borders were shut in the interest of the country.
He cited smuggling as one of the major reasons for taking the action but said the closure of the border had yielded results
Former Senator Shehu Sani tweets that the Closure of Nigeria’s borders made no impact in containing banditry and http://insurgency. It only unleashed hardships and sufferings on the border communities. It was all about Rice and Rice; and we are still neither a major Rice producer nor exporter of the commodity, that has become staple to the palates of the citizenry.
The Closure of Our Country’s borders made no impact in containing banditry and https://t.co/kmpJiW1tzT only unleashed hardships and sufferings on the border https://t.co/YROFVmXZit was all about Rice and Rice;and we are still neither a major Rice producer nor exporter.— Senator Shehu Sani (@ShehuSani) December 8, 2020
“Now that the message has sunk in with our neighbours, we are looking into reopening the borders as soon as possible,” Garba Shehu, presidential spokesman, quoted Buhari to have said.
Although state governors did not speak with State House correspondents at the end of the meeting held at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, the Presidency issued a statement quoting Buhari as asking the state governors to work more with traditional rulers and community members to improve local intelligence gathering that will aid the work of security agencies.
The statement issued by the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, was titled “President Buhari charges governors to work with traditional rulers for local intelligence.”
Areas hit hardest with the 16 month border closure remains the southern states, where even West African countries especially Ghana, Benin Republic, Togo etc depend on for trade.
This is one of the key factors that propelled Ghana into preventing Nigerian businesses from reopening their shops as well as imposing prohibitive tariff because Ghanaian business men and women can’t move freely to Nigeria to restock their shops and carry on their businesses with the biggest market in the sub region.
Meanwhile, a 50kg bag of rice is 15,000 naira in Cotonou, Benin Republic, while it costs almost 40,000 naira in Nigeria where domestic production is being hampered by the killings of scores of rice farmers in Nigeria’s north eastern state of Borno by Boko Haram Islamist terrorists.
Nigeria’s minimum wage can not buy a bag of rice for a family, amid the country’s 2nd recession in five years with it’s attendant runaway inflation.