Despite the declaration by the Federal Executive Council, that four of the country’s land border has been opened, it was reported that activities haven’t resumed at the Illela border, linking Sokoto State in Nigeria to Konni, Niger Republic.
It was also reported that Nigeria’s land border with Benin Republic at Seme, near Badagry, Lagos State, remained closed, more than 24 hours after the Federal Government announced the directive on Wednesday.
The Comptroller General, Sokoto/Zamfara command, Ma’aji A. A, at the Illela Customs headquarters, explained that no directive has been given officially.
He said, “Yes, the government has declared some of the land borders open, but in administration, you know how things work. Here at Sokoto Nigeria Customs Command, we are yet to receive the signal.
“I am here to see the level of preparation for the reopening of the border. I am sure the traders are eager to return to their legitimate businesses.
“As soon as the reopening directive is communicated to us, we shall comply immediately.”
NAN reports that aspiring travelers were denied exit at Seme by the Nigeria Immigration Service officials claiming that they were yet to get a formal directive to reopen the border.
An official of Nigeria Customs Service, on anonymity, told NAN that security agencies were still expecting official directives to reopen the border.
He stated, “We heard about the reopening of the four land borders from the news on Wednesday, but we are still waiting for directives from the head office in Abuja.
“We cannot just open the border like that. As you can see, when the border was closed they introduced the Joint Border Patrol which comprises of Army, Immigration, Police, and Customs.
“Anytime they ask us to open the border, we will open it.”