Seme border stays closed, 24 hours after Buhari’s order

Seme border
Seme border

Nigeria’s land border with the Benin Republic at Seme, near Badagry, Lagos State, remained closed, quite each day after the federal declared its reopening on Wednesday.

Recall that the Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Mrs. Zainab Ahmed, on Wednesday announced the immediate reopening of 4 land borders after the Federal council meeting held virtually in Abuja.

A correspondent of the press agency of Nigeria (NAN), who visited Seme on Thursday evening, reports that human and vehicular movement across the border post was restricted because the frontier remained under lock.

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Intending travelers were denied exit at Seme by officials of Nigeria Immigration Service who claimed that they were yet to urge the formal directive to reopen the border.

An official of the Nigeria Bureau of Customs, who pleaded anonymity, told NAN that security agencies at the border post were still expecting official directives to reopen the border.

He said, “We heard about the reopening of the four land borders from the news on Wednesday, but we are still expecting directives from the top office in Abuja.

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“We can’t just open the border like that. As you’ll see, when the border was closed, they introduced Joint patrol which comprises Army, Immigration, Police, and Customs.

“Anytime they ask us to open the border, we’ll open it,” he added.

NAN also reports that movement restrictions and checking of products and vehicles remained in situ at quite 20 checkpoints mounted by Customs, Immigration, and Police along Badagry Expressway.

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Also, commercial activities were yet to select up at the Seme market thanks to the continued closure of the border.

A trader at the favored Seme market, Mrs. Funke Senapon, appealed to the federal to order the officials to reopen the border.

She said that residents and traders who were rejoicing about the news of the reopening were disappointed once they discovered that the border had not been opened.

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