Armed smugglers recently engaged officers of the Nigeria Customs Service from the Oyo/Osun Area Command in a four hour gun battle in a thick forest an attempt to escape with their smuggled and contraband goods.
The Customs Area Controller for Oyo/Osun Command , Mr. Christopher Ogar Odibu disclosed this on Tuesday while addressing journalists in Ibadan.
He said that at the end of fierce gun battle, the Customs officers overpowered the armed smugglers who later escaped through the forest, leaving their prohibited goods. He said one person was arrested in connection with smuggling of the prohibited goods into the country.
He also disclosed that the Command has seized over 4,000 bags of smuggled imported rice within the last one month along Opara/Bodo Musa axis of Iwajowa Local Government Area of Oyo state.
Other items seized in the course of operation include nine trucks, 150 used imported tyres, 51 bales of second class clothes, 50 gallons of vegetable oil and two used cars .
Odibu put the Duty Paid Value of the seized goods at N92.8 million .
The Area Controller expressed worry that some Nigerians had remained unrepentant despite the huge lose they incur in the illegal business, adding that government efforts in transforming the agricultural sector, especially in the area of rice production should be encouraged.
He warned that Cusroms will keep coming down hard on “unpatriotic Nigerians who engage in smuggling of used cars , foreign rice and other contraband goods”.
“I want to affirm that no matter the means of conveyance or concealment of prohibited goods , I assure you that the officers of this command are on constant surveillance and monitoring and we will discover them”, he said.