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Afe Babalola backs Buhari on border closure

The founder, Afe Babalola University, Ado Ekiti, Chief Afe Babalola (SAN), said on Sunday that the closure of Nigeria’s land borders in some parts was in the best security and

economic interests of the country.

 Babalola, who canvassed Nigerians’ support for the policy, said it had compelled many Nigerians to go back to agriculture with the attendant remarkable improvement in local production in addition to helping to checkmate influx of illicit arms and ammunition which had fuelled insecurity.
The ABUAD founder spoke in Ado Ekiti, the Ekiti State capital, during the closing ceremony of the International Fund for Agricultural Development project training for youths in Oyo and Ekiti states under the Youth Employment in Agri-business and Sustainable Agriculture.
 He called on Nigerians and governments to invest in agriculture to attain “food sufficiency, industrialisation, improved foreign exchange earnings and employment generation,” noting that the sector remained the only viable launch pad to economic growth and development.
Babalola said Nigeria could overcome poverty, hunger and unemployment, if governments invested in agriculture, urging them to create an enabling environment through implementation of policy frameworks to ensure that farmers had unfettered access to credit facilities, modern implements, improved seed varieties and fertilizer and by extension attract youth to farming.
He lauded President Muhammadu Buhari over the border closure, which he described as “a right step in the right direction to tackle persistent smuggling which has crippled the country’s economy.”
 “Border closure has continued to yield positive results in improving food production and invariably impacting on the country’s economy. It is imperative that we continue to support the Federal Government on border closure and endure its attendant effect to ensure that Nigeria regains its lost glory in that all-import realm and in the best economic and security interests of the country.
 “The closure of the borders is helpful to the farmers. I see farming as the mainstay of this country. We just have to maintain it. And the only way is to close the borders.
 “Nigerians may not understand this now, may be because of the little pains it has brought; but I believe there is light at the end of the tunnel as the positive and long-term effects that will soon follow will make Nigerians happy,” Babalola said.
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