WAKE UP: The commonsense in Nigeria’s border closure


*Comptroller-General of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), Col. Hameed Ali warning officers and men against indiscipline.

By Bashir Adefaka

It is commonly asked, What did Nigeria do to offend God that He made its people this wicked towards it and themselves?” In providing answer, I my own way, I say God has no particular concern for Nigeria than He has for other nations under His universe except that why things that work for others refuse to manifest in the Nigerian life is because most of its people are just deliberately mischievous.

Only by mischief would somebody choose consumption based economy and declare persistent war on production based one. They wanted everything fast, effortless, easily yet with higher profit mindless quality. They got warnings against the consequences of foreign goods dependency but would rather plot assassination of such warners and sabotage of such government that is blessed to consider national interest along that direction.

Until a little over four years ago, this remained the albatross of our nation thus seeming unresolvable national economic calamity.

If not that people are just wicked and mischievous towards own nation and fellow citizens, why should marketers of things that lives of people depend upon prefer to import those items first into another country in the neighborhood, pay all necessary tariffs and taxes to that country knowing full well they do so to develop economy of that place, only for them to now forcefully (equipped with firearms, matchets and broken bottles) smuggle them into their own country where roads and power, health and education, as well mainly as economy workability have direct effect on their individual lives – so that they will not need to pay a kobo into the economy?

They aim at eliminating anybody particularly customs officials that attempt to block their way. It was and still in little, little occasions so bad that some customs officers and personnel are said to be accomplices in this treason against innocent country of their own. Yet, these are the people who are first to cry that “Nigeria is not working like Saudi Arabia, America and Russia”. They are the ones who say Nigeria is bad and that there is hungry I the land and so on and so forth that Nigeria is not favouring them thus always wanting to migrate to other land on claim of greener pasture.

How can Nigeria you curse daily favour you? Don’t you get it? How can a country you don’t and never loved to develop productively or industrialisationally work for you? And when the country dies not work for you, how can you not be hungry, how can your children not grown to the state chaos, frustration, poverty as a result of biting unemployment?

I mean Nigeria was good until 1999 return of democracy which justifies my claim that the worst of military (and we quickly mention Abacha regime that only got hard on corrupt elements, hailing swinders of banking sector and stability foreign exchange and expanding Nigeria’s economic space as investment destination of choice) is better than the best of civilian regime. Take it or leave it, the discipline of military class will continue to make it stand out among all forms of government. This is however not an invitation to military rule because, what we have had with Muhammadu Buhari led Administration of All Progressives Congress (APC) at the Federal level has changed the naratives to suggest that democracy is not really the debacle but actors that played or acted the democratic script for the first 16 of of 20 years of civilian rule in the country.

This is where I will continue to love leaders like Aminu Waziri Tambuwal, Yemi Osibajo (SAN), Nasir el-Rufai, Babatunde Raji Fashola (SAN) and, last but not the least, Hameed Ali, Army colonel retired, who have and are still players in the latest dispensation of the democratic experience, for their resilience and uncompromising principles. Tambuwal, for example, stabilised the Nigeria’s legislature and brought dignity laced with integrity into it as Speaker of the Seventh House of Representatives and Number Four Citizen of the country. He is generally loved and preferred at all times to anybody less that President Muhammadu Buhari for any election. He was great as a progressive and remains in the garb of progressives despite being in a party that is opposition at Federal level. Humility and Godfearingness are core noticeable of the Mutawallen of the Sokoto Caliphate. On another ground, Yemi Osinbajo, currently vice president, is a man (combined with his boss’ religiosity) that has put to shame those claiming that religion is bane of Nigeria’s development. As a pastor and his boss, Buhari being conscious Muslim, they have both blend that with their professional backgrounds and experiences in fashioning a better stead by which the country is now laid on stronger foundation that will last. So are el-Rufai, Fashola and Ali.

That is by the way. In other not to deviate so much from the subject matter that is the commonsense in Nigeria’s border closure, it suffices to bring this write up to a stop with two major quotations from Col. Hameed Ali (Rtd), the Comptroller General of the Nigerian Customs Service.

He said: “A Nation’s Actual Independence is in its ability to feed itself,It is risky for a nation to rely on others for its food supply,the day you quarrel with them, they stop to feed you.Before the border closure, a rice Miller told me he hardly sell one truck in a month. Today, he not only sells many trucks in a week, buyers are depositing money with him to make supplies. He now runs from one farm to another to get rice. He’s happy, the farmers are happy.

“That is our joy, we want Hardworking Nigerians to become truly prosperous.Unfortunately, those who barely make a statement without mentioning China are asking us to open our borders. Whereas, when Chinese decided to grow, they closed their borders for 40 years. By the time they opened them, they had become a great nation. This is a Win-Win for Nigeria, never again are we going to rely on others to feed us….”

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