Chief Osita Chukwu (Freight Forwarder)
The land border closure has caused a lot of hindrances to the economy of Nigeria and all West Africa, including some parts of Central Africa and reopening it now you will see a lot of damages have been done. Apart from the corruption tendencies which is being addressed by the Federal Government, the government was concerned that all the arms and ammunitions coming in through the land borders, but it happens that it was not as they (government) thought. So the summary is that we have lost and where is the way forward and if that is the case, where are we going or what are we going to do as the land border has been reopened?
Pius Ujubuonu (Freight Forwarder)
The closure of land borders can only be described as ill-timed, not strategic and irresponsible. The timing of the closure presents no doubt about the government's little understanding of the AfCFTA scheme. It also denies the relevant MDAs of concept analysis and the preparation of the change management initiatives required to take the ripples and its effects to the consumers, inside and outside the West Africa corridor. Furthermore, the general accessory exponentially attached to safety standards should have been in place and enforced by now. Having now opened the borders almost the same time with the take-off of AfCFTA will place Nigeria in a sore disadvantage, deny Nigerians their pride of place in leveraging the profit accruable from the scheme. The scheme as it presently would place the Nigerian transportation sector in disadvantage, make our truckers underdogs and would provide alibis for foreign truckers to swoop on Nigerian freight to the detriment of Nigerian transporters. The closure was simply of little advantage.
Festus Ukwu (Secretary NCMDLCA)
I think re-opening of the borders is a good one that will attract vibrancy at the border. The policy from onset is Draconian and unnecessary. It disrupted trade and importers are still counting loses, so I really don’t think the closure is justifiable
Segun Onigbese ope (Logistic Expert)
Some claimed there were security reports that necessitated the closure, but if you look at the way the government has been acting, you can't even confirm that, so based on what we can all see, the closure was a wrong move.
From the experiences of companies which export to the regional market, it was terrible. Imagine shipping goods to Europe and then bringing it back to the western region, so closing the border in the first instance was a wrong move.
Abel Timothy Ayokunle (BoT member ANLCA)
The closure of the land border affected trade, there are many policies put in place by the Federal Government that are not justifiable, but now that the borders are open, we hope we don’t go back again to our vomit.
Eugene Nweke (Former President NAGAFF)
The government didn’t open the land borders because of anything, but because of AfCFTA, so I think government reopening the borders is just based on AfCFTA because Nigeria is the main country to drive the trade.
Muyiwa Olaonipekun (Clearing Agent)
The closure has no moral justification, rather than counting gains we were counting loses; physical loss and financial loss. Physical loss because many of our members died and financially billions were lost for the period that the border was shut, so there is no moral justification for the closure in the first place.