The Comptroller-General, Nigerian Customs Service (NCS), Col. Hameed Ali has insisted that the border closures will continue for a while irrespective of the pressure from the neighbouring nations for its opening.
He said that Nigeria has to first think of her survival before considering the impact of the closure on neighbours.
According to him, Nigeria must lay the foundation for its growth to prop her industrialists to reason and grow.
Without taking the strategic step to sanitise her system, the Customs boss said Nigeria will become a dumping growth for all manner of products when the African Continental Free Trade takes off in earnest.
He spoke as the Special Guest of Honour at the Graduation Ceremony of Senior Course 3 in of the Nigerian Customs and Staff College, Gwagwalada, Abuja.
He was thankful to the Nigerian Police Force, whom he said their support for the border closure was awesome.
He noted that Nigeria is blessed with the population of 200 million that can consume all her products, which renders the immediate needs for external patronage inexpedient.
He recalled that the Chinese had shut their borders for over two decades, a development he claimed make it the strongest economy.
His words: ” It is our hope that the boarder drill will continue for a while so that we cannot only sanitize our process but we can also lay the foundation for our growth and development because that is what we need to get our industrialists think and grow.
“If we don’t do that we are going to be in deep problem. By the time we begin to operate the African Continental Free Trade, Nigeria will be a dumping ground for every product from Africa. So, we need to be able to develop our capacity to be able to meet our requirements in terms of goods and services so that we can keep at bay the influx of other goods.
“If we don’t, these goods will come and our industries will continue to die. So we look forward to a situation whereby our industrialists will capitalize on this drill that we are doing so that they can grow and provide those things that we need. The Chinese closed their doors for over 20 years and now they are on top.
“We need to close our own. There is nothing that is being produced today that we cannot consume in Nigeria. Our industrialists do not have to look outward to find the market, we have it right here. And we need to grow that market.
“I hope that Nigerians will agree with us that while we are doing this drill, I know that our neighbours are in a haste to get us open the boarders, I think we need to look at our strategic interest first before looking at other people.
“I remember that I always tell people when they confront me that why are you doing this to our neighbours, I say look even in the aircraft if the say when there is an oxygen mast dropping even your own child, they say out your own oxygen mast before your own child, this is because you have to save yourself to get the child to survive. We must as Nigerians survive and flourish for our neighbour to also flourish.”
Kaduna Governor, Mallam Nasir el-Rufai, also expressed support for the closure of the borders.
According to him, the boarders should remain closed as long as possible for local manufacturers to develop.
He said: “Don’t forget that those that are preaching the reopening of the boarders today, closed their boarders for 20 years. Nigeria must grow on its internal capacity. We will not allow our neighbours to use the porosity of our boarders to sabotage our economy.”
NYSC Approves N33,000 Monthly Allowance For Corps Members
The National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) has increased the monthly allowance of corps members to N33, 000.
Corps members were getting N19, 800 until the latest review.
Director General of NYSC, Brigadier General Shuaibu Ibrahim, announced the increase during a working visit to the NYSC secretariat in Bauchi.
He said the increase is in line with the new minimum wage approved by the federal government.
In a statement on the official Facebook page of NYSC, Ibrahim informed provisions for the new allowance have been made in the 2020 budget and “payment would commence as soon as funds are released by the appropriate authorities”.
The DG had pledged the monthly allowance of corps members would be increased “immediately the federal government starts the payment of the new minimum wage”.
“Your monthly allowance would be increased immediately the Federal Government starts the payment of the new minimum wage to all public servants nationwide,” he said in an address delivered at the NYSC orientation camp in Iyana-Ipaja, Lagos.
“Efforts are in top gear at all levels to ensure adequate welfare for all corps members.”
President Muhammadu Buhari signed the new minimum wage bill into law in April 2019.
Amotekun Is A Subtle Plot By Christians To Dominate Southwest — Sharia Council
The Supreme Council for Sharia in Nigeria has lashed out at the establishment of Amotekun, a security outfit it claimed was a subtle plot by Christians to dominate the South-West region of the country.
Speaking to newsmen in Osogbo, Osun State’s capital, the Muslim group’s Vice President Sheikh Abdurrasheed Hadiyatullah alleged that the affairs of the Christian-dominated State Police Force was designed and determined from the Church at the expense of the Muslim majority in the region.
He added that the Amotekun program is viewed as a subtle method of further Christianization of the Southwest by its promoters.
Hadiyatullah said: “The Amotekun program is viewed as a subtle method of further Christianization of the Southwest by its promoters in their usual manner of having political and power dominance over the Muslims in the region.
“It is another elusive way of establishing a ‘Christian-dominated State Police Force whose affairs would be designed and determined from the Church at the expense of the Muslims majority in the region.
“Provision of effective safety for lives and property of the people at any point in time is a collective responsibility one that is devoid of any iota of elements of religious, ethnic and primitive bigotry; a type of garment that Amotekun presently but unfortunately wears.
“Issues of security of the peoples ought not to be premised on the altar of politics and personal interests as doing such would amount to building an empire on mere propaganda and the figment of the imagination of the gullible. It stands to collapse shortly after its creation.
“Any form of the Christian agenda camouflaged as a Security Outfit, such as the Amotekun, where the Muslims population from the Southwest and in the country at large is viewed as a target is an act of injustice, unfairness, inequality, barbarism, savagery and wickedness taken too far and therefore outright unacceptable and thereby condemned in its entirety”.
Injustice Fuelling Killings In Nigeria, Says Atiku
Former Vice President Atiku Abubakar has said that failure of the justice system to apprehend and punish perpetrators of violence and killings is fuelling insecurity in the country.
He stated this in a statement signed by his media aide, Paul Ibe in apparent reaction to killings in Plateau and Taraba over the weekend.
Recall that unknown gunmen suspected to be bandits killed more than 10 persons around Kwatas village in Bokkos LGA of Plateau on Sunday.
The 2019 presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) said that justice remained key to promoting peace in the society.
Atiku noted that the government must ensure those caught perpetrating crimes face the full wrath of the law to serve as deterrence to others and raise the confidence of the citizenry in the justice system.
“A society with a derelict justice system is a fertile land for misconduct, according to a popular Africa adage.
“To be sure that we are one step ahead of criminals who pose existential threats to our internal security, it is important that we empower our justice system with the belief that when stiff punishments are handed down on these criminals, there will be a deterrence for a repeat of this nature of crime.
“So, there is no deterrence to such crimes. Justice is thus key to promoting peace in our communities.
“If you give people the confidence that anyone who breaks the law will be found and made to face the full wrath of the law, then people will be less inclined to promote violence and the killings that come with it,” Atiku said.