How Fear of Arms Importation Allegedly Forced FG To Shut Land Borders


Fresh indications have emerged that the Nigerian government had directed closure of the land borders due to alleged intelligence report of some persons trying to smuggle arms and Armunition into the country through the land borders.

Sources at the Seme border told DAILY TREND NEWS that the team of joint security operatives were seconded to the borders to assist the Nigeria Customs Service beef up security at the borders in order to avert the imports which could cause security threats for the country.

A source at the border confirmed that the order to shut the borders actually came from the President

“According to him, it was a presidential order from Abuja, they got information that some people are trying to bring in Arms and Armunition into the country through the land borders”

“So it’s not only Seme border that was closed down, but all the land borders” he said

Meanwhile, clearing agents operating at the Seme and Idiroko border stations have started counting their losses  as transit cargoes remained trapped due to the joint military operations embarked upon by security agents and intelligent gathering operatives.

Also, the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) is expected to lose N55m from Seme and Idiroko borders for the closure of the posts on Wednesday and Thursday.

While Idiroko border command of the service generated N21.6million in a day, the Seme command generates N16.6m in a day and with the two days shut down, the revenue would be lost.

While Seme border is the busiest command followed by Idiroko, stakeholders have condemned the manner  in which the Federal government shut the land borders over the security exercise carried out by security agencies.

The stakeholders argued that the closure of borders was not in line with the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) protocol agreements.

As at Wednesday, thousand of Nigerians were stranded at the Seme and Idiroko border, but yesterday, movement was allowed partially for those who had valid documents, passport and valid identity card.

But cargoes are not allowed to move while clearing agents are not allowed in and there are no clearing activities at the borders, which relatively affected small traders as well.

An official of the West African Road Transport Union (WARTU) Mr. Umukoro Peter told our correspondent that already loaded trucks are trapped at the border and would not be allowed to come out till further notice.

The border closure is expected to last for 28 days.

The Chairman, Association of Nigerian Liscenced Customs Agents (ANLCA) Seme border chapter, Lasis Fanu said that the border is still closed not only Seme border but all the borders across the federation, saying the order is from the Presidency.

He said, “Since the border is closed, there is nothing agents are going there to do.

Agents are to do documentations at the border for the goods coming in. Since goods are not coming in, there is nothing they are going there to do.

We pray that the issue is not up to 28 days we heard earlier because we have perishable items at the border and everything will be perished.”

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