The Comptroller-General of Nigeria Customs Service, NCS, Hameed Ali, has said that import and exports of all goods through land borders remain banned with the recent partial border closure announced by Federal Government.
Ali made this known at a joint news conference with his counterpart from Nigeria Immigration Service, Mohammed Babandede, in Abuja on Monday.
He explained that the exercise banned all goods irrespective of the items, whether such goods were contraband or not.
Mr Ali said for now, only goods passing through the controlled borders such as air and sea would gain entry into the country.
According to him, there is no time limit to end the partial closure of the nation’s borders.
Mr Ali added that the exercise would be sustained until the neighbouring countries duly comply with the ECOWAS protocols on transit of goods.
The NCS boss said that diplomatic engagement was ongoing to ensure the cooperation of the neighbouring countries.
Following this development, Niger Republic had just announced the ban on all forms of exportation of rice into Nigeria, the customs boss added.
Mr Ali said the inter-agency cooperation had helped to achieve the success so far recorded in the exercise.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the joint border security exercise, code-named “Exercise Swift Response”, began on August 20.
It was set up to ensure a better security of the country’s territorial integrity, particularly the land and maritime borders, against trans-border security concerns.
The exercise is being coordinated by Office of the National Security Adviser, ONSA, in the four geo-political zones of North-West, North-Central, South-West and South-South.