The Director of Press and Public Affairs of the Liberia Immigration Service (LIS), Abraham Dolley says all borders in the country remain closed, contrary to rumors circulating in some parts of the country, especially Nimba that borders have been opened and cross-borders are free to carry on their normal transactions.
It has been rumored in Nimba county, one of the counties share borders with Ivory coast and Guinea that borders in the county, especially Yekepa-Guinea, Loguatuo, Gborplay-Ivory Coast, Buutuo-Ivory Coast and the Ganta-Guinea opened and business people and travellers are moving from one point to another freely.
LIS Director of Press and Public Affairs, Abraham Dolley stated that all borders in the country are closed and being monitored by security personnel.
“All borders are considered closed as per the mandate of the president”, said Director Dolley.
According to him, all borders in the country were ordered closed immediately when the Corona virus entered Liberia and that mandate remains in place until further notice from the President of the Republic of Liberia, George Manneh Weah.
The LIS Communication Director meanwhile clarified that “essential commodities” are allowed to entered into the country through the borders, but stated that individuals bring them (goods) are not allowed to enter the country.
“What happen is that essential commodities, as per the President’s mandate are allowed to come into Liberia, but individuals bringing those commodities are not allowed to come to Liberia”, Mr. Dolley explained.
Commenting on how that works, Mr. Dolley noted that individuals bring goods from out of the country will have to have trucks at the Liberia side of the border which will be used to transfer the goods and onward taken to wherever those goods were destinated to be offloaded in Liberia, verse visa.
This, he stated is intended to avoid person to person contact.
The LIS Press and Public Affairs Director disclosed that heads of ECOWAS countries are hanging heads to come up with possible Measures that might lead to the reopening of borders and maintained that “as it stands, all borders in the country are safe, secured and closed”.
According to him, unless borders of other neighboring countries are opened, opening Liberia borders will be of no importance as citizens of Liberia would not still have access to other countries.
“Our leaders are working harmonuously to open the borders jointly, because if you open the Liberian borders and Guinea border is not opened, Ivory Coast border is not opened, Sierra Leone border is not opened, then Liberia border is not opened at all”, Mr. Dolley noted.
“So they are working as MRU leaders, as ECOWAS heads of states to see how best they can open the borders simultaneously”, the LIS Communication Director told LINA.
Commenting on the security of those closed borders, Mr. Dolley stated that the the LIS has its men assigned to all borders and ports of entries across the country and said, officers of the Border Patrol Unit and the Marine Unit have also been deployed to beef up the strength of other security personnel assigned at various borders and ports of entries across the country.
“In an event where there are some borders entries are not assessable by road or considered unofficial, we have the Border Patrol Unit that is closed with the responsibility to patrol between those border points to make sure that people don’t enter the country through those points”, Dolly said.
According to Mr. Dolley, for further security of the land and sea, the LIS as institution has the Marine Unit if the LIS that is currently working with the Coast Guards to make sure that the coastal line of the country remains very “safe and secured” amidst the time of the deadly COVID-19.