Vice President of Nigeria, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, has said that the closure of the borders was to ensure farmers in Nigeria are prosperous, urging Nigerians to endure the high cost of commodities occasioned by closure of the country’s borders.
The vice president spoke at a town hall meeting in Bénin City as part of activities of the ongoing National Festival for Arts and Culture, saying that part of the reasons for the border closure was to get attention of neighbouring countries to take more seriously the question of policing the borders.
He said other prosperous nations did not allow any country bring goods into their countries but opted to grow what they eat.
Prof. Osibanjo noted that smuggling discouraged local production and does not allow Nigeria farmers have access to market.
His words, “Part of the reasons for shutting the border is the smuggling that has been going on. If we continue to allow the Chinese and others to continue to bring in all those things, we will kill farming completely and most of our people will not be employed.
“There may be some pain in other to gain. The countries of the world that are prosperous didn’t allow anybody to bring in anything to their country. They made sure they grew what they eat. I can assure you that very soon you will see a great deal of progress, you will see a more of our own commodity coming into the market. If we allow our own people grow these things, our people will prosper. The only way our people can prosper is if we let them use the opportunity that they have such as farming, fishing and others.
“We are going to make sure that commodity are cheaper. We must bear in mind that the reason today some commodity are more expensive is because we stopped smuggling. We have to encourage our local farmers so that our local farmers can prosper.”