The Nigeria Customs Service on Monday said it has placed a ban on import and export of all kinds of goods through Nigeria land borders.
“For now, all goods, whether illicit or non-illicit, are banned from going and coming into Nigeria,” Hameed Ali, NCS chief, said at a press conference in Abuja.
“Let me add that for the avoidance of doubt that we included all goods because all goods can equally come through our seaports,” he said.
“For that reason, we have deemed it necessary for now that importers of such goods should go through our controlled borders where we have scanners to verify the kind of goods and how healthy to our people can be conducted.”
Ali said the measure would enable security agencies to be able to scan the goods entering the country.
In August, the Nigerian government announced the partial closure of its western border with Benin to curb rice smuggling that is threatening the country’s attempt to boost local production.
Nigeria’s President Muhammadu Buhari said he wants Nigeria to be self-sufficient in rice and has imposed import controls. He said rice smuggling across the western border threatened his policy of self-sufficiency.
However, since the closure of the borders prices of rice both local and foreign have skyrocketed.
Ali said border security had seized items worth N1.4 billion since the partial closure of borders.