Border closure achieved nothing, FG should apologise – Shehu Sani

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A former member of the National Assembly, who represented the Kaduna Central Senatorial District in the 8th Senate, Shehu Sani, on Tuesday, asked the Federal Government to apologise for closing Nigeria’s land borders.

The government had in August 2019 closed its land borders to curtail illegal importation of drugs, small arms, and agricultural products into Nigeria from neighbouring West African nations.

Sani had also in December 2020 while speaking to PUNCH, said the closure of Nigeria’s land borders did not yield any result.

Sani said the closure of the borders rather worsened the economic situation of the country and inflicted hardship on Nigerians.

“We have not achieved anything by closing the borders but have only inflicted hardship on the border communities and Nigerians. The closure of borders has not stopped herdsmen and bandits from moving in with weapons.

“If it is about rice, are we now producing enough? No, we are not doing that. The cost of a bag of rice has even become more expensive because of the closure of the borders,” the Senator had said.

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But reacting on Tuesday to the recent reopening of borders by the federal government, Sani noted that since the closure of borders achieved nothing, the government owed it as a duty to apologise after reopening the borders.

“The closure of Nigeria’s borders has achieved nothing; opening it should come with apologies,” he Tweeted on Tuesday.

The government had last Friday approved the reopening of four additional land borders shut in August 2019 as part of efforts to curtail smuggling and boost local production of rice.

A circular released by the Nigeria Customs Service, signed by Deputy Comptroller-General E. I. Edorhe, on behalf of the Comptroller-General of Customs, Hameed Ali, listed the borders as Idiroko border post in Ogun State, Jibiya border post in Katsina State, Kamba border post in Kebbi State and Ikom border post in Cross River State.

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