President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Muhammadu Buhari, in a statement by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, explained that Nigeria’s border closure was not meant to punish other neighbouring countries, but to strengthen her security and economy.
The Nigerian leader narrated the achievements of his administration in implementing its three-point campaign agenda by focusing on fixing the economy, providing security and tackling corruption.
Impact of Border Closure on Nigeria’s Economy
The Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Mr. Femi Adesina, on Saturday said the period of border closure will be used for stock-taking on threats to the nation’s security and economy.
He noted that Nigerian farmers have been celebrating the closure, which had drastically reduced the smuggling of agricultural produce as well as arms and ammunition infiltration.
“Nigeria’s huge, vibrant youth population have been encouraged to go back to the farms and are living decent and respectable lifestyles.”
President Muhammadu Buhari also adjudged the country’s virtual food security position to be “very good in the last three rainy seasons. This the president attributed to the federal government’s reduction in the price of fertilisers by 50 per cent and the presidential directive to the Central Bank of Nigeria not to give foreign exchange for food imports.
He said this had resulted in saving the nation billions of naira.
While commending Nigerians in the Diaspora for their huge home remittances – more than 25 billion dollars in 2018 – the president also lauded their individual performances in their various fields of expertise.
Tackling security and corruption
On security, he said “it is common sense that you can only run the country if it is secured and that the country has not done badly in the North East.
Buhari described the havoc done by corruption to the image and economy of Nigeria abroad as “terrible”.
According to him, his administration has now focused on retrieving stolen fixed assets and returning the proceeds of the sale to the treasury through the Treasury Single Account (TSA), so that nobody can return them back to the convicts even after his tenure.