Customs seizes N8b contrabands amid border closure
Notwithstanding the closure of Nigerian borders, the Nigerian Customs Service (NCS), has made seizures worth over N8billion from the ongoing joint border security exercise codenamed: EX-SWIFT RESPONSE, in four geopolitical zones of the country.
The National Public Relations Officer of the Nigerian Customs Service, Deputy Comptroller, Joseph Attah, disclosed this during an online summit organised by the Journalists International Forum for Migration (JIFORM).
Delivering a paper entitled: “Trade facilitation, Border drill, and implications for Nigerian economy,” Attah explained that the exercise, which commenced in August 2019, is aimed at better securing the nation’s borders in order to strengthen its economy, and address other trans-border security concerns.
He regretted that Nigeria has been confronted by trans-border security and economic challenges, which include arm banditry, smuggling, irregular migration, illicit drug trafficking, and proliferation of light weapons among others, which led to increasing insecurity and economic downturn for Nigerians.
According to him, about 90 percent of illicit drugs and weapons that are being used for acts of terrorism and kidnapping in the country today came in through the porous land borders, pointing out that since the partial closure the acts have been considerably reduced.
Speaking on, “National security: the role of Media,” the President, Nigeria Union of Journalists, (NUJ), Chris Isiguzo, observed that the security sector is a unique institution that requires a high degree of expertise for the media to effectively discharge its role in that area.
He pointed out that the media often encountered several challenges in covering the sector, stressing that reliance on and privileging of official statements, and a lack of expertise on security issues, can undermine the media’s ability to act as a watchdog.
Also, President of Journalists International Forum For Migration (JIFORM) Ajibola Abayomi, called on leaders across the world to do more for journalists and other front liners battling COVID-19, stressing that the post-survival of the media, health and well-being of citizens and the economy, should be accorded priorities by nations.