The Federal Government has established a Joint Security Patrol in Katsina State along Nigeria’s border with the Niger Republic to check smuggling and influx of illegal immigrants.
The Minister of Interior, Abdurrahman Dambazau, made the disclosure when he paid a courtesy call on Gov. Aminu Masari of Katsina State on Thursday in Katsina.
The minister, who was represented by the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry, Dr Bello Tambuwal, stated that the action was aimed at preventing smuggling and illegal migration through the borders.
He also added that the government was contemplating air border patrol, and fencing sensitive parts of the borders in the long run, all in efforts to check smuggling and illegal migration.
Dambazau said that the patrol base would be sited on Jibia road, and be manned by a joint team of officers from the Nigeria Immigration Service, the army, Nigeria Customs Service, and the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps.
He noted that Nigeria’s border with the Niger Republic covers more than 1,000 kilometres crossing some states of the federation.
He further explained that there was a long history of trading and inter-communal relations between Nigerians and Nigeriens particularly those residing along the border communities.
The minister pointed out that the ties made the borders to become porous and difficult to monitor, resulting in the influx of contrabands and illegal migrants that have aggravated insecurity in Nigeria.
In his remarks, Gov. Masari commended the initiative saying that the joint border patrol would go along way in curbing human trafficking that has been going on along the Nigeria-Niger Republic border.
Represented by the Deputy Governor, Alhaji Mannir Yakubu, Masari said that the joint border patrol would also complement the state government efforts at combating cattle rustling along the same borders.