The Nigerian government did not stick to their words due to its failure to announce the opening of their closed border to Ghana, Benin and other neighbouring countries as expected on January 31, 2019.
The much-awaited announcement did not see the light of day despite the Nigerian government in a memo signed by the Comptroller of its Immigration Service, Victor David Dimka, said a decision will be made on the stipulated date to see the way forward.
General Secretary of Ghana Union of Traders Association (GUTA), Alpha Shaban, in a phone-in interview with GhanaWeb noted that his outfit, as it stands, is unperturbed about Nigeria’s refusal of open its borders for businesses.
In his view, it’s their right to make a decision to protect manufacturing companies as well as their traders to stabilize their economy.
“We don’t even care about closing or opening their borders because Nigeria as independent country or a sovereign country if you like…so if they are doing something to protect their manufacturing companies as well as their traders there so that it doesn’t affect their economy. Well, they have the right to do that.”
However, Mr Shaban is urging the government of Ghana to learn from their neighbouring country, Nigeria, to close its doors to anything that will negatively affect the Ghanaian traders and the economy.
“It is their right to do that…and that is why we are also calling on our government to make sure that our laws work…because when our economy is in shambles, all others will leave us…with the problem,” he stated.
It would be recalled that the Nigerian government in August last year closed its borders to Benin and by extension, other West African countries, as part of measures to prevent the smuggling of cheap goods and weapons into the country.
The blockade had a ripple effect on trade in the West African sub-region; compelling some to use alternative routes for their exports.