By John Ofikhenua, Abuja
The Nigerian Customs Service (NCS) on Wednesday allayed fear of the growing concern about its plans to reopen the boarders that have been partially shutdown since August this year, saying that it has also designed the e-Customs to arrest whatever challenges that may arise from the situation.
Speaking with The Nation on phone, the Public Relations Officer, Mr. Joseph Attah, said that: “In its wisdoms, the author of the e-customs have designed it to maintain an impervious system. Thus, it is insulated from malpractices, with the deployment of modern technology.”
It is observable that the partial closure of boarders have resulted in restriction of the proliferation of illegal migrants, arms and ammunition.
This has consequently led to the improvement of the security situation in the country. This also evident from the number of arrested legal migrants already recorded from the operation of the joint security team under the supervision of the Office of the National Security Adviser.
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Besides, the security improvement, the patronage for domestic products is gaining tremendous boost. It has brought about the increased cultivation of agricultural produce such as rice. Despite the high costs, which is seen as a teething challenge of every policy implementation, there is a very high hope that in the next few months the prices of rice and other produce will decline drastically as local farmers harvest their crops.
Presently, the nation can at the very minimum boast of the quality of food imported into its market because virtually all the commodities are scanned and certified fit for consumption at the sea and airports. This measure has in no small way checkmated the influx of toxic foods that had permeated the Nigerian markets in the past decades.
With the partial closure of the boarders and the regulation of inflow of commodities into the country, employment opportunities have been induced internally for the teeming Nigerian youths. This, has in addition, removed some of the idle minds from crimes and criminality that they had taken for a living.
However, there is a growing concern that with the recent steps that the government is taking to reopen the boarders if the neighbouring countries accede to its condition, all the previous gains from the exercise would fizzle out in a hurry.
But Attah said that “with the Nigerian Customs recent measure- the e-customs, which is an end to end electronic flow, brings about transparency, security and accountability in the import and export business. This is so because, Customs efficiency, which is the hallmark of the e-customs, is tantamount to a secured boarder.”
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