A former Secretary-General, Commonwealth of Nations, Emeka Anyaoku, among other eminent Nigerians on Saturday lent their support to the President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration on the closure of Nigeria’s border.
They agreed with the government’s position that closure of the border would boost the nation’s economic growth.
They spoke at the 2019 Investiture of the Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria, CIBN, on Saturday in Lagos.
In his speech, Anyaoku solicited support from Nigerians for the border closure saying it will not only enhance growth in the agric and agro industries but also the manufacturing industry.
“We should support our foreign border closure by President Muhammadu Buhari and its ultimate importance to the home grown policy.
“If it will be the government’s concentration
in a demonstrable manner on measures for enhancing the country’s development of agriculture and agro industry.
“And also for enhancing the country’s manufacturing capacity to be able to serve our internal consumption and export.
“It is clear that the abundant variety of Nigeria’s natural resources and our large population constitute adequate phases for the country’s economic prosperity if the Federal and State Governments can show a determination to provide the necessary policy and practical support and also if our citizens can be persuaded or even coerced through regulation into curbing their appetite for imported, rather than locally produced goods, there will be a tremendous turn around in the economy,” he said.
In his own comments, the Director-General, West African Institute for Financial and Economic Management, WAIFEM, Dr. Baba Musa, appealed to Nigerians to encourage and understand the reason for the border closure.
He said: “The border closure was not an attempt to stifle business or discourage manufacturers from selling their goods.
“It is to check smuggling and multiplication of arms that are coming in through the borders to create insecurity in the country and to enable genuine traders to move their goods and services, through the normal channel and pay the appropriate duties and charges.
“It’s a welcome development, we have seen the outcome.
“Nigerians should encourage this until such a time that our neighbours come to terms, on the need to protect our borders from smuggling and activities that create insecurity.”
For the Chairman, Board of Fellows and Practice Licence, Mr. Bayo Olugbemi, the country could overcome its economic challenges.
Commenting on the theme of the event: “Nigeria’s Emerging New Economy: Opportunities, Challenges and Prospects,” Olugbemi noted that most of the economies in the world today doing well do not have as much resources as Nigeria.
“All they have is human capability and that has come to play in the multinational revolution, which is leveraging on the digital space.
“So, we need to get this through to the public and make concerted efforts so that we are not left behind. This is why we chose the theme.
“The emerging economy is digitally driven and I believe that Nigeria has great opportunities in this field.”
About 122 individuals were conferred with the Associate of the Institute, 82 Senior members and 14 Honorary fellows at the ceremony.