By Joy Okoli
The National President of the Association of Nigerian Licensed Customs Agents (ANLCA) Mr. Tony Nwabunike, has said over 2000 trucks with goods are currently trapped at the Nigerian borders. He made this remark during a media briefing at their Headquarter of the association recently.
Speaking on the ongoing partial border closure, he noted that it has brought some gains to the country but there should be a review of the process for the benefit of legitimate importers.
“Six months into the Seme border closure which commenced on Aug. 20, 2019 and the Federal Government keeps saying that they will reopen the borders soon.
“The present situation of goods now at the Seme borders is very sad and something should be done to reduce the suffering of the importers of these goods,” he said.
According to him, “some of the goods are seen with maggots coming out from them”, adding that the climate was also not good for them as they are under harsh weather.
Nwabunike pointed that the border cannot be permanently closed, adding that they cannot ascertain the amount lost but that very huge amount was being wasted.
He urged government to do a quick review of the situation and allow dutiable goods from the affected neighbouring countries to pay duty and come in.
He called for a human face approach which would save many businesses from dying and ameliorate the indebtedness that many genuine businessmen and women found themselves due to the policy.
He noted that the border closure which led to the usage of the ports lead to port congestion due to the fact that the facilities at the port was not adequate for the huge traffic.
“Our members are besieging us at the secretariat with the numerous problems and professional issues they face due to the border closure and problems at the port.
“There are just so many challenges at the port and some of the issues has to do with traffic gridlock due to bad access road, the scanners are not working, multiple units of government agencies in and around the ports, also removal of consignment in d port not easy.” he said.
By Joy Okoli