Two people have been reportedly killed while ten others sustained varying degrees of injuries as men of the Nigerian Customs Service and military personnel clashed with suspected smugglers in Ogun State.
Our correspondent gathered that the incident occurred at Oja-Odan in Yewa North Local Government Area of the state on Thursday when a patrol team from Ogun Command Area I intercepted 320 bags of foreign parboiled rice (50kg) stockpiled in a building.
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It was further gathered that during evacuation of the goods, some ‘diehard’ smugglers in collaboration with hoodlums attacked and opened fire on the patrol team.
Four Customs operatives, one soldier and five civilians assisting in the evacuation reportedly sustained gunshot injuries during the attack.
It was learnt that the patrol team, in repelling the attacks, also gunned down two of the suspected smugglers and left many others with gunshot injuries.
The spokesman of the Command, Hammed Oloyede, confirmed the incident on Friday.
He said those injured have been taken to the hospital for “proper medical attention and are currently responding to treatment.”
According to him, the patrol team succeeded in evacuating the items, arrested one suspect, Taiye Kujo, and six motorcycles used by the suspected smugglers.
Oloyede said: “Investigation is ongoing to fish out more perpetrators of this barbaric act.
“In this regard, the Customs Area Controller, Comptroller Peter Kolo, assured the general public that the renewed hostilities by armed smugglers will not deter our officers and men from discharging their statutory responsibilities.
“He further appealed to the traditional rulers and community leaders to warn their subjects to desist from smuggling activities and attack on security operative as anyone caught shall be made to face the wrath of the law.”