The Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) today announced the reopening of four additional land borders across the country.
This development followed President Muhammadu Buhari’s December 16, 2020 directive which granted approval for a phased reopening of the borders including Mfum, Seme, Illela and Maigatari.
The borders are Idiroko in Ogun, Jibiya in Katsina, Kamba in Kebbi and Ikom in Cross River.
In August 2019, Nigeria closed its land borders over the proliferation of illegal importation of drugs, small arms and agricultural products into Nigeria from neighbouring West African countries.
In 2020, the president ordered the reopening of borders in Seme in Lagos, Illela in Sokoto, Maigatari in Jigawa, and Mfum in Cross River.
According to a circular issued by the Deputy Comptroller-General (EI&I), EI Edorhe and seen by The Portway, dated April 22, 2022, the Service said the reopening of the borders followed the earlier directive by President Muhammadu Buhari on December, 16, 2020.
What Nigeria Customs is saying
“Sequel to the presidential directive dated 16 December, 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 (north-west zone); Kamba border post, Kebbi state (north-west zone); and Ikom border post, Cross River state (south-south zone),” the memo reads.
“Consequently, all customs formations and JBPTs are to take note and ensure that proper manning takes place in compliance with extant operational guidelines.”
What you need to know
The Federal Government in March 2020 announced the total closure of all land borders that were hitherto partially closed in order contain the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Secretary to the Government of the Federation SGF and Chairman of the Presidential Taskforce on COVID-19 pandemic, Mr. Boss Mustapha, had further announced measures approved by the government to protect the civil servants.
Earlier in 2018, the federal government had also approved the closure of the borders with its neighbours to check rice smuggling into the country.