Tuesday, February 2, 2021 8:21 pm
Smugglers in Ogun on Tuesday stormed the state Governor’s office at Okemosan, Abeokuta over alleged killing of one of their colleagues by officers of Nigeria Customs Service.
It was learnt that the Customs officer operating at Orile-Imo killed a person suspected to be a smuggler and injured three other persons who are in the hospital.
Some members of ‘Rice and Car Crosser’ who stormed the Governor’s office in protest over alleged killing of their colleague complain of the hardship and injustice regularly inflicted on them by the Customs.
The smugglers said this was in spite of the fact that they regularly bribe customs officers to allow their goods to pass without any molestation.
Revealing how they bribed customs officers, one of the smugglers told journalists that they usually called customs officers when their consignment of rice car or any goods arrive Ita-Osun Kobape area of Ogun state and they (Customs) collect the sum of N5000 on every good, most especially cars.
“Every time goods arrive at Ita-Osun, we put a call to them and they will come to collect money from us. We do this so that they will not disturb us. But they will still call their colleagues from Ikeja, Lagos to accost us.
“Sometimes they seize goods worth of N5m from us, depending on how many cars we are able to acquire per day. Every time they collect N5000 from us per car. If we are able to acquire 100 cars from our base at Ita-Osun ,they collect N50, 0000.
“Today we were done with our business at our base at Ita-Osun and we were on our way when they suddenly attacked us at Orile-Imo area of Sagamu, Ogun state where one of us, Lekan was shot in the chest and stomach and three others sustained injuries.
The smugglers called on the state governor, Prince Dapo Abiodun to come to their aid.
“We are here to appeal to the government to come to our aid, we don’t go to Cotonou to buy our cars and rice, we buy them here in Ogun and they can’t continue to kill us. This is what we know how to do. We can’t steal or do money ritual.
“We settle them every time we buy goods in order for them not to disturb us or us business,” he said.
The Secretary to the State Government, Mr Tokunbo Talabi addressed the angry protesters.
He assured them that government will look into their complaints, while also warning them to desist from doing things that are unlawful.