Despite criticisms by some neighbouring countries, Ghanaian president, Nana Akufo-Addo has pleaded with President Muhammadu Buhari to expedite the process of reopening the closed borders because of its effect on the economy of his country.

Vanguard reports that President Akufo-Addo made the plea to Buhari during a bilateral discussion they had on the sidelines of the ongoing UK-Africa Investment Summit 2020 in London.

It was gathered President Akufo-Addo while showing understanding of the need for Nigeria to protect her citizens, pleaded for “an expedited process, because the Nigerian market is significant for certain categories of business people in Ghana.”

But President Buhari said that the partial closure of the borders was to stop proliferation of arms, ammunition and hard drug in Nigeria.

In a statement by the special adviser to the president on media and publicity, Femi Adesina, President Buhari said he could not keep his eyes open and watch youths being destroyed through cheap hard drug, and compromised security caused by unbridled influx of small arms.

“When most of the vehicles carrying rice and other food products through our land borders are intercepted, you find cheap hard drug, and small arms, under the food products. This has terrible consequences for any country,” he said.

He said it was regrettable that the partial border closure was having “negative economic impact on our neighbours but we cannot leave our country, particularly the youths, endangered.”

The president said the Sahel region was awash with small arms, which accounts for severe security challenges in Mali, Chad, Burkina Faso, Niger and Nigeria.

“We are in fact the biggest victims,” he lamented.

On time frame for reopening the borders, President Buhari said it would not happen till the final report of a committee set up on the matter was submitted and considered.

He said: “We will get things sorted out. Our farmers, especially those who grow rice, now have a market and are happy, and we are also concerned about hard drug and weapons. Once the committee comes up with its recommendations, we will sit and consider them.”

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