The President, Muhammadu Buhari, has said Nigeria will keep any border closure agreement it reaches with its neighbours on the reopening of the country’s shut land borders.
A tripartite committee comprising Nigeria, Benin and Niger is currently working on a border closure agreement to resolve the issues that led to the partial closure of the borders by Nigeria.
Buhari said that when the report of the committee was ready and agreed on by all the parties, Nigeria would implement the border closure agreement.
He spoke on Tuesday in Abuja when he received the outgoing President of the ECOWAS Bank for Investment and Development, Mr Bashir Mamman-Ifo, and his successor, Dr George Donkor, at the Presidential Villa.
The President told his visitors that so far, Nigeria had made gains from the border closure, justifying the decision to take the action.
He stated, “We have saved millions of dollars. We have realised that we don’t have to import rice. We have achieved food security.
“We have curtailed the importation of drugs and proliferation of small arms which threaten our country.”
He commended the ECOWAS Bank’s president for the improvements recorded in his eight-year tenure and urged his successor to build on those achievements.
A State House statement by Buhari’s media aide, Mr Garba Shehu, said Mamman-Ifo informed the President that the bank had been transformed from loss-making to profit-making.
He added that commitments from ECOWAS member-states doubled $1.4bn.
On his part, Donkor thanked the Nigerian leader and the people for their support in his emergence, noting, ‘‘Without Nigeria, I could not have emerged.”