The Federal Government has on 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 in the country.
According to 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, the borders include the 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.
The circular titled, ‘Re-opening of four additional Nigerian border posts’ sighted reads: ““Sequel to the Presidential directive dated December 16, 2020, granting approval for phased reopening of land borders namely; Mfum, Seme, Illela and Maigatari borders across the country, I am directed to inform you that four additional borders listed below have been approved for re-opening.
“Idiroko border post, Ogun State (South-West Zone); Jibiya border post, Katsina State (North-West Zone); Kamba border post, Kebbi State (North-West Zone); and Ikom border post, Cross River State (South-South Zone)
“Consequently, all Customs formations and Joint Border Patrol Teams are to take note and ensure that proper manning takes place in compliance with extant operational guidelines.”
President Buhari in 2019 ordered that some of the Nigerian land borders are shut in a long running effort to boost the production of rice in Nigeria.
At the time, the comptroller general of the Nigerian Customs Services, Hameed Ali, announced that there is no timeline for reopening the borders, which will remained closed “until we have total control over what comes in.”