Closure of Borders in South-West Suspicious — Gani Adams
The Aare Ona Kakanfo of Yorubaland, Chief Gani Adams, has described the continued closure of Nigerian borders in the south-western part of the the country as suspicious, alleging that borders in the northern part of the country are open and operational.
Adams made the statement on Friday in Badagry, Lagos State, at the grand finale of the 2019 edition of the annual Olokun Festival. Chief Gani Adams, in picking holes in the decision of the Federal Government on the border closure, alleged that borders in the northern part of the country “still operate conveniently without anybody blinking an eye,” just as he raised the alarm that the continued closure of the borders in the South “portends a grave danger to us as a people because of the economic implications.”
But Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, at a separate forum, also on Friday, reiterated the determination of the Federal Government to maintain the closure of the country’s borders, saying the move was aimed at getting the neighbouring countries to take seriously, the question of policing the borders.
The vice president, in Benin City, Edo State, at a town hall meeting as part of the ongoing National Festival of Arts and Culture, justified the continued closure of the borders, insisting that it was to ensure that farmers in Nigeria were prosperous.
He said other prosperous nations did not allow any country to bring goods into their domains but opted to grow what they eat. The vice president said smuggling was bad for the economy as it discourages local production and does not in any way allow the country’s farmers have access to market.
He said: “Part of the reasons for shutting the borders is the smuggling that has been going on. If we continue to allow the Chinese and others to continue to bring in all those things, we will kill farming completely and most of our people will not be employed.
“There may be some pain in other to gain. The countries of the world that are prosperous didn’t allow anybody to bring in anything to their country.
They made sure they grew what they eat. I can assure you that very soon, you will see a great deal of progress. You will see more of our own commodities coming into the markets. If we allow our own people grow these things, our people will prosper. The only way our people can prosper is if we let them use the opportunity that they have such as farming, fishing and others.
“We are going to make sure that commodities are cheaper. We must bear in mind that the reason today some commodities are expensive is because we stopped smuggling. We have to encourage our local farmers so that our local farmers can prosper.”
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