lifting of ban on riceAccording to the sources, it has been indicated that Nigerian Customs Service (NCS) Hameed Ali retired Nigerian Army Colonel and current Comptroller General of The Nigerian Customs Service stated that to lift the ban on rice importation through the land borders. The customs licensed agents said that the move would help Nigeria curtail the losses arising from the old policy. Furthermore, they also stated that rice millers are now importing the staple commodity into the country instead of producing it. The agents, under the auspices of the Association of Licensed Customs Agents (ANLCA), Seme Chapter told journalists in Seme that the idea behind the new pronouncement by the CGC should be encouraged.

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Further in this regards, the agents narrated that the only way to stop smuggling of the product was to stop the millers of the same staple food from turning themselves into importers rather than concentrate on their milling business. One of the agents who did not want his name in print said: “I think we should not look at this issue from any sentiment but from logical point of view. My view is that I do not think anybody will go through the borders to incur extra cost unless there is an intention to defraud government. It has also been stated that I think as of now this process of going through the land borders does not do that and we must support our local farmers. We strongly advise the Customs to suspend the lifting of ban on rice through land borders and continue to operate through the sea borders.”