The closure of Nigerian land borders has led to massive job losses with over 200,000 people losing their means of livelihood, according to the Vice President of the Association of Nigerian Licensed Custom Agents (ANLCA) Mr. Kayode Farinto.
The freight forwarder revealed this yesterday even as he called on the Federal Government to reopen the land borders, stating that the continuous closure of the land borders also negates the protocols and conventions signed by the country.
Recall that the Federal Government had ordered the complete closure of the Nigerian border, placing a ban on both legitimate and illegitimate movement of goods in and out of the country late last year due to security reasons.
Speaking to journalists in his office yesterday, the ANLCA Vice President stated that the closure of the border has overstayed its usefulness, informing that over 1000, licensed Custom Agents have been out of businesses with over 200,000 employees of the licensed customs agents unemployed since the closure.
Farinto further argued that the continuous closure of the land borders would also affect the nation when the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AFCFTA) takes off.
He urged the government to also consider reopening the borders for essential goods amid the peculiar situation of the COVID-19 pandemic
According to him, the policy makers in the country are not getting things right with the continuous closure of the land borders that has lasted for eight months.
His words: “In the spirit of ECOWAS, this border closure is not good for Nigeria. Now, we are trying to practice the AfCFTA but the closure also negates the agreement that Nigeria has signed.”
“What the government should have done after closing the borders, is to deploy security devices. It is high time we opened our borders and don’t forget that freight forwarders and international business people that move these cargoes are now unemployed with many sick and not able to afford a living”