Borno State Governor, Prof. Babagana Zulum has appealed to Nigeria Customs Service to collaborate with his government to build business with neighbouring countries of Niger, Chad and Cameroon, with whom the state shares borders with.
The governor made the appeal while paying a visit on the Acting Comptroller-General of Nigeria Customs Service, Bashir Adewale Adeniyi at the Service’s headquarters in the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja.
During the meeting, Zulum sought increased collaboration between Borno State Government and the Nigerian Customs Service to foster economic growth through enhanced trans-border trade with neighbouring countries of Cameroon, Chad and Niger Republics.
Zulum emphasised that a seamless trade and economic environment would not only benefit Borno State but also contribute to the nation’s economic prosperity.
He said: “As peace is gradually returning to Borno State, I want to express my readiness to work with Nigeria Customs Service to enhance the transportation of goods between Nigerian borders with Cameroon, Chad and Niger, which will in turn enhance the economy of not only the immediate communities but the entire Nigeria.”
The governor while congratulating the Ag. Comptroller-General, expressed gratitude to the leadership of Nigeria Customs Service for their support to Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) who are largely citizens of Borno State affected by the over a decade old insurgency.
He said: “Let me, first and foremost, congratulate you on your appointment as the Ag Comptroller-General of Nigeria Customs Service; this vital organisation in the country. I want to also commend Nigeria Customs Service for uplifting the standards of living of the displaced communities in Borno and other parts of the Northeastern region.”
Responding, the CG gave assurance to the governor on his commitment to developing new measures to assist in re-establishing the full structure of cross-border trade in Borno.
He emphasised that the measure will boost the region’s economy and provide jobs for the people in Borno State.
The CG also sought an enhanced relationship with the host communities.
He said: “Moving forward, we will need your support to engage with members of the border communities in Borno, especially as the insurgency has been degraded. We will build on the good relationship that we have and leverage on it to re-establish a good relationship with Cameroon and, of course, the Southern part of Chad.”
During the visit, Zulum was accompanied by Borno State Commissioner of Budget and Planning, Dr. Babagana Mustapha.