Just In: Senate rejects ban on vehicle importation through land borders

The Senate on Wednesday called for the reversal of the Federal Government’s policy banning the importation of vehicles through land borders.

Deliberating on the issue during plenary, the red chamber said the ban which took effect from January 1, 2017 will lead to a loss of 500,000 jobs.

The issue was brought through a a motion titled, ‘The Ban on the Importation of Vehicles Through the Land Borders into the Country’, jointly moved by Senators Barau Jibrin (Kano North), Kabiru Gaya (Kano South), Sabi Abdullahi (Niger North), Shehu Sani (Kadana Central) and Ali Wakili (Bauchi South).

Senators who spoke on the issue described it as anti-poor.

Sen. Dino Melaye said, “When formulating such policies, the welfare of the people and the socio-economic effect must be considered. Nigerian customs should show capacity in managing our border and enhance capacity to stop illegal movement of vehicles.”

On his part, Sen. Sam Egwu, said, “Government must put on its thinking cap and stop churning out policies that affect the masses negatively.”

The lawmakers, therefore rejected the policy, as it asked the Nigeria Customs Service to immediately suspend implementation of the policy.

The Deputy President of the Senate, Sen. Ike Ekweremadu, said, “From the contributions made, it is obvious that the policy is unpopular. We are representatives of the people and the people have spoken through us that they do not want this policy. I think those in government should listen to them.”

The Senate also directed its Committee on Customs and Excise to investigate the circumstances that led to the sudden decision of the Federal Government to place a ban on importation of vehicles through the land borders.

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