With the partial closure of the Nigerian border, foreign pineapples imported from Cotonou have disappeared from markets in Lagos.
Following the development, pineapples from local farmers are gaining grounds in the market to fill the vacuum left by the imported ones from Cotonou.
Giving an update on local production of pineapples, a user on Twitter said the partial closure of border has had adverse effect on supply of pineapples in Lagos.
“Border closure has really affected the supply of pineapples in Lagos, truth be told. But this farm in Abeokuta is producing 5,000 kilograms of pineapples every week to help fill in some gap. They have 200kgs now for distribution. Nigeria can be self-sufficient in food production.” Omasoro Ali Ovie with the handle @OvieAli wrote.
Meanwhile the Federal Government yesterday said items estimated at N3.5 billion have so far been apprehended with the partial closure of its land and maritime borders with neighbouring countries.
The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed disclosed this on Monday at Seme, a border town between Nigeria and Benin Republic.
Addressing the media after the inspection, the minister said no fewer than 296 illegal immigrants had been arrested during the ongoing exercise.
“In the area of security, the ongoing exercise has recorded a number of seizures and arrests that would have had grave security consequences.
“Some items seized include; 38,743-50kg bags of parboiled foreign rice, 514 vehicles, 1,012 drums filled with PMS, 5,400 Jerri cans of vegetable oil, 346 motorcycles, 10, 553 Jerri cans of PMS and 136 bags of NPK fertilizer used for making explosives.
“The estimated values of the apprehended items is about ₦3,5 billion,’’ he said.
The minister said that the partial closure had so far curbed the smuggling of foreign rice into the country, in addition to other prohibited items.
He said that as a result of the closure, Niger Republic had already circulated an order banning exportation of rice in any form to Nigeria.
“Our series of interactions and engagements with Rice Miller Association of Nigeria since the commencement of this exercise, has shown that the border closure has enhanced more production and milling of Nigerian rice.
“Patronage of Nigerian rice has increased and farmers are expanding their farms as well as engaging more hands.
“The border exercise has also curbed diversion of petroleum products from Nigeria to neighbouring countries.
“Furthermore, the border closure has impacted positively on revenue generation of the Federal Government which in turn will be used to build more infrastructure and develop critical sectors of the nation’s economy,” he said.
“The minister said that 95 per cent of illicit drugs and weapons being used for act of terrorism and kidnapping in Nigeria come in through the porous borders.
“He, however, noted that since the partial closure, the acts had been drastically reduced.
“Our conclusion is that, the arms and ammunition these terrorists and criminal elements were using no longer gain access into the country.
“In addition, the drugs which affect the health and the wellbeing of Nigerians have equally been reduced,” he said.