The federal government under the leadership of President Muhammadu Buhari on Wednesday approved the reopening of Nigeria’s land borders.
However, despite the reopening of the borders, some other products remain banned as confirmed by the Minister of Finance, Budget and Planning, Zainab Ahmed.
It will be recalled that the Federal Executive Council (FEC) on Wednesday approved the immediate re-opening of four land borders which include: Seme, Illela, Maigatari, and Mfun.
Speaking to newsmen after the FEC meeting, Ahmed disclosed that even though the President has approved the reopening of some land borders, items such as rice and poultry remain on the list of banned items which must not be brought in through the borders.
“The ban on the importation of rice, poultry and other banned products still subsists and will be implemented by the border patrol team,” the Minister said.
The Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Niyi Adebayo, also added that all relevant agencies will sustain the efforts against smuggling and smugglers so that the gains recorded during the border closure will be effectively sustained.
“The issue of smuggling of rice to the country has reduced drastically. We are hoping that our agencies will be able to sustain that so also is the issue of poultry smuggling.
“Also, very important is the issue of importation of small arms and weapons into the country that also has stopped,” Adebayo said.
In August 2019, President Buhari had ordered the closure of Nigeria’s land borders and in December 2020, the approval was given for the reopening of the closed borders.
Below is the list of all the items that are banned from being imported to Nigeria.
2. Live or dead birds like frozen poultry
3. Pork and beef
4. Bird’s eggs, excluding hatching eggs
5. Refined vegetable oils and fats (includes mayonnaise)
6. Cane or beet sugar and chemically pure sucrose
8. Cocoa Butter, Powder and Cakes
9. Fruit juice in retail packs
10. Waters, including mineral waters and aerated waters, but excluding energy or health drinks and beer and stout
11. Bagged cement
12. Medicaments such as paracetamol tablets and syrups, Cotrimoxazole, Metronidazole, Chloroquine, etc.
13. Mineral or chemical fertilizers containing two or three of the fertilising elements nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium, excluding organic fertilizer
14. Soaps and detergents
15. Mosquito repellant coils
16. Rethreaded and used tyres but excluding used trucks tyres for rethreading of sized 11.00 x 20
17. Corrugated paper and paper boards, excluding baby diapers and incontinence pads for adult use and exercise books
18. Telephone recharge cards and vouchers
19. Carpets and other textile floor coverings
20. All types of footwear, bags and suitcases, excluding safety shoes used in oil industries, sports shoes, canvas shoes
21. Hollow glass bottles of a capacity exceeding 150mls of all kinds used for packaging of beverages by breweries and other beverage and drink companies
22. Used compressors, used air conditioners, used fridges/freezers
23. Used motor vehicles above fifteen (15) years from the year of manufacture
24. Ballpoint pens and parts including refills
25. Tomato paste or concentrate put up for retail sale
26. Waste pharmaceuticals
Meanwhile, the Minister of Health, Osagie Ehanire, on Wednesday, noted that Nigerians should expect to receive the COVID-19 vaccine by the end of January 2021.
Ehanire made this claim during the Federal Executive Council meeting presided over by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo.
The Minister noted that a technical working group in the Ministry of Health is working on which vaccine will work for Nigerians.