Customs bans import, export of all goods through land borders

Border closure: Customs now rakes in N5.8bn a day — Ali

Hameed Ali, Comptroller-General, Nigeria Customs Service.

 

The Nigerian Customs Service (NCS) says no item can be imported or exported through the nation’s land borders anymore.

Customs Comptroller-General, Hameed Ali, disclosed this at a press conference in Abuja on Monday.

He said the measure would enable security agencies to be able to scan goods entering the country.

Ali said for now, goods can only enter the country through the air and sea ports, where they can undergo thorough scanning and certified fit for consumption.

“We hope that by the time we get to the end of this exercise, we would have agreed with our neighbours on the type of goods that should enter and exit our country.

“For now, all goods, whether illicit or non-illicit, are banned from going and coming into Nigeria.

“Let me add that for the avoidance of doubt that we included all goods because all goods can equally come through our seaports.

“For that reason, we have deemed it necessary for now that importers of such goods should go through our controlled borders where we have scanners to verify the kind of goods and how healthy to our people can be conducted.”

He insisted that despite the rights for movement of persons the enabling ECOWAS protocols, there must be primacy of security over such rights.

Ali, who was asked whether the Federal Government had not breached the rights of the citizenry to movement and international trade, said “when it comes to security, all laws take back a seat”.

“We want to our nation, we want make sure that our people are protected. You must be alive and well for you to begin to ask for your rights. Your rights come when you are well and alive.

“Go and the people in Maiduguri when Boko Haram was harassing their lives, the only question was survival, there is no question of right. This time Nigeria must survive first then before we begin to ask for our rights,” he stated.