ANLCA advocates deployment of technology for border security

…Says trade suffering under partial closure of land borders

Customs National Public Relations Officer-DC Joseph Attah(L) 
and National Publicity Secretary of ANLCA-Adumaza Joe Sanni 

The Association of Nigerian Licensed Customs Agents (ANLCA) has urged the Federal to embrace the use of high technology equipment such as drones to effectively monitor and manage the security situation at the nation’s land borders.
Contained in a document made available to our correspondent, Publicity Secretary of the association, Mr. Joe Sanni, said as much as the security of the nation’s land borders remained important in order check smuggling and other security challenges, it is also important to employ smart strategies that would ensure continuity in legal trade without undue hindrances.    

He said: “In order for the nation’s security to tackle smuggling, security challenges, secure our borders effectively to guarantee socio-economic sustainable growth, there is an urgent need to review our strategies and tactics, in the light of modern day technologies, deployed to check acts of crime and criminality across the length and breadth of Nigeria.”

He mentioned the need for use of close circuit cameras as well as drones to monitor movement of persons at the border areas, just as it is important to carry out data collection of persons and goods moving across the borders.

He said “…the need to install CCTV cameras at least, at our approved Borders, Posts and Stations, to monitor the movements of goods and persons across these Borders, is urgently desirable.

“These robust, tropical cameras will be powered 24/7 by solar, and monitored via a control room manned by shifting, well trained officers, who are expected to raise alarm on noticing anything funny.”

Sanni also argued in the interest of gathering of data of activities across the nation’s borders, for the purpose of collating and analysing such data over a period of time and seasons, which would serve as a working document of facts to understand specific needs and strategies to manage the situations against smuggling and other security problems.

He added that “With the study/surveying of the estimated one thousand two hundred illegal/unmanned routes, it will be expedient to introduce the use of drones to gather movements of persons and, possibly goods information, through these detected illegal routes.”

Sanni noted specifically that the ongoing “Exercise Swift Response” being jointly carried out in a joint Nigeria Customs, immigration, the armed forces and Police operation has undoubtedly brought untold hardship on especially the members of ANLCA operating in those Border commands, and the contiguous communities.

He noted that the exercise as coordinated by the office of the National Security Adviser (ONSA) to check the smuggling into Nigeria of illegal arms and ammunition, unwholesome drugs, food stuffs and the cross-border movement of undocumented/illegal aliens, should also consider the strategy of robust engagement of border communities, to create workable partnerships that would last in the interest of border protection against criminality.