Die-hard smugglers attack Customs in Ogun State
* Shatters patrol vehicles with bullets
*One officer still missing
*As Comptroller Kolo vows to resist smugglers antics
(By Udeme Clement):
Die-hard smugglers operating at Idiroko, the border between Nigeria and Benin Republic are not relenting in their incessant attacks against Customs officers on enforcement duties within their areas of coverage.
The news reaching our platform revealed that dare-devil smugglers just carried out another violent attack on officers while on duty, shattering their patrol vehicles with bullets.
Credible sources hinted our Correspondent that the new Customs Area Controller (CAC), of Ogun-1 Command, Comptroller PC Kolo, has vowed to resist smugglers antics in all ramifications.
According to our sources, the new CAC, who took over the mantle of leadership just last week, stressed that his officers are not deterred by nefarious activities of economic saboteurs, as government policies must be enforced to enhance national security and economic development.
When contacted, the Public Relations Officer (PRO), of the Command,
HAMMED BUKOYE OLOYEDE, informed;
“On Thursday, 3rd of December, 2020 at about 12:10 hours, a team of officers and Men of Nigeria Customs Service, Ogun I Command while on routine mobile patrol along Olorunlere village, near Alapoti, Ado-Odo Ota Local Government Area of Ogun State intercepted some vehicles loaded with bags of foreign parboiled rice.”
He said, “The suspected smugglers sensing their loss on sighting the patrol team attempted to evade arrest and started shooting sporadically at the officers. This resulted to serious exchange of fire between the two sides.
“Consequently, the patrol team called for re-inforcement. However, before the intervention from other units, they were overwhelmed due to the numeric strength of the smugglers/hoodlums. In the ensuing commotion, the team tactically withdrew to enable the arrival of reinforcement teams.”
His words, “On arrival of the Military personnel and other units of Customs including Federal Operations Unit (FOU) as requested by the CAC, the hoodlums had already vandalised one of the official vehicles attached to the team. It was later discovered that an official driver, CA I (T) Taiwo J Odeyemi was missing and has not been found, as at the time of writing this report.
“In the light of the above, investigation is on-going and effort is being made along with other security agencies and critical stakeholders to locate the where about of the missing officer and rescue him alive.
“To this end, the CAC strongly warned smugglers and their supporters that incessant attacks leave officers with no other choice than to use appropriate force to deal with these new wave of criminal attacks on personnel performing their statutory functions.
“The Command is not deterred by this and will step up its anti-smuggling strategies against those whose interest is to make profits at the detriment of the nation’s economy.”
Finally, the CAC vowed to ensure that those behind this attack face the full wrath of the law.