For the second time in two weeks, the dare devil smugglers on Wednesday attacked officers of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), Federal Operations Unit Zone A and injured three officers.
A statement by Theophilus Duniya, the Unit’s Public Relations Officer, the smugglers mobilised mobs to attack officers but they were able to repel the attack and move the intercepted smuggled items to the unit headquarters in Ikeja, Lagos.
The interception of smuggled goods has shown that the 16 months of border closure as well as the Federal Government’s claim that it has reached agreement with the neighbouring countries of Benin Republic to stop smuggled items from entering the country, has failed to deter unpatriotic Nigerians from smuggling contraband items into Nigerian markets. And this has continued to put Customs officers lives in great danger.
“This morning at about 5:00 hours on Wednesday, 17th February, 2021 dare devil smugglers attacked a patrol team of officers of the Federal operations Unit Zone A, who were on lawful duty. The officers intercepted vehicles fully loaded with smuggled frozen poultry products as well as foreign used vehicles also known as tokunbo along Aradagun end of Badagry- Seme expressway,” Duniya stated.
According to him, the mobs attacked the officers with dangerous weapons such as broken bottles, stones, petrol bombs as well as assaulted rifles.
“As the mob attack ensued, there was a cross exchange of fire; three of our officers sustained various degrees of injuries but they were able to successfully evacuate the intercepted poultry products to the Unit’s Headquarters at Ikeja, while the injured officers are currently receiving treatment,” he said.
Duniya, who said the acting controller of the unit, Usman Yahaya has ordered the intelligence unit to commence investigation into the incident in order to apprehend the perpetrators of the attack, warned smugglers to desist from attacking Customs officers on lawful duty.
He enjoined community leaders and parents to enlighten their wards and youths about the criminality of obstructing officers on lawful duty.
He however assured that officers and men of the Unit shall remain resolute at enforcing the Customs extant laws.
“We are better equipped and determined with high morale to enforce the fiscal policies of government, no matter who is involved,” he warned.