Customs condemns incessant attacks on officers
.Says officers can use rifles in self defense, national security
By Udeme Clement
The Nigeria Customs Service, NCS, has strongly condemned incessant attacks on officers while on duty, saying such distraction would not deter them from carrying out their statutory functions at all times.
The National Public Relations Officer, PRO, of Customs, DC Joseph Attah, made this assertion, while speaking on NTA news, in connection with the recent attack on an Inspector of Customs, Abdullahi Mohammad Kuso, attached to Ogun Command.
DC Attah expressed great displeasure on the manner in which the officer was abducted, severely beaten and inflicted with life threatening injuries. He also presented video clips showing where the officer was about being set ablaze by the hoodlums, but for timely intervention of rescue team that arrived the scene of crime in the nick of time to avert the tragedy.
His words, “The action of these smugglers is lawlessness and no doubt a clear demonstration of moral depravity on the part of these criminal elements.
“While the Comptroller-General of Customs, CGC, Ali Hameed does not encourage indiscriminate use of rifles at the disposal of our anti-smuggling operatives, in a situation where life is involved, they have to use such official rifles in self defense and ensures that the interest of the nation is appropriately protected”.
Earlier, the Public Relations Officer of Ogun Customs Command, Maiwada A. A, disclosed that the crime took place at Papalanto area of Ogun State, where smugglers also destroyed the Customs check-point, located at Papalanto axis, close to Lafarge Cement Company, setting the whole place ablaze.
According to him, the officer escaped date by whisker, as he was rescued by other officers of the Command.
Maiwada said, “Full scale investigation is on-going, in order to track those who perpetrated this barbaric and cruel act on our officer.”
He warned, “We therefore sound clear warning to smugglers that Ogun Command would not relent in bringing to book economic saboteurs and criminals who often violently engage officers at various approved duty posts, to the extent of inflicting injuries on them, destroying government properties and constituting nuisance in the society”.
He stated that threat from smugglers would not deter them from carrying out their statutory functions of revenue generation for government, trade facilitation and anti-smuggling operations within their area of coverage.
It could be recalled that this attack is coming only few weeks after another officer with Ogun Command was violently attacked by smugglers at Idiroko, while on official duty with his colleagues.