A staff of the Nigeria Customs Service on Friday reportedly shot an executive member of the proscribed National Union of Road Transport Workers, Lateef Aboki, in the chest at Iseyin-Moniya park in Iseyin, Iseyin local government area of Oyo State.
The Customs officer (names withheld), who was said to be in mufti and in company of three other officers, allegedly chased a commercial vehicle into the park in a private Lexus SUV, on the suspicion that the vehicle carried a bag of rice and in the process shot the motorist.
The head of the park, Mr Lateef Shittu, a.k.a Akue, told newsmen that he got a call that one of his executive members was shot by a customs officer at the park and immediately contacted the Divisional Police Officer (DPO) in Iseyin.
He stated that the DPO arrived at the scene immediately to put the situation under control before it degenerated into chaos.
The officers were said to have fled the scene following the incident.
The victim was reported to be responding to treatment at a hospital in the town.
“I was called around 4pm that some customs officers in mufti chased a vehicle which they believed was carrying a bag of rice to our park and in the process, hit one of our buses.
“They were asked to identify themselves as they wore no uniform and were in a private Lexus Jeep but instead of doing that, they started shooting. Unfortunately, one of the bullets hit one of my executive members, named Lateef Aboki in the chest.
“We thank God that he is responding to treatment. We call on the authority to warn the Nigeria Customs officers to apply decorum and professionalism when doing their job.
“The vehicle they chased did not carry rice when they eventually searched it. Why chasing vehicles with private number plates and in mufti? Do they even need to chase vehicles in the town and be shooting when they know there are many people walking by or unknowingly driving by?” Akue said.
It was gathered that the DPO, who was at the scene persuaded the motorists not to take laws into their hands.
The SUV, belonging to the Customs Officers, was later towed to the police station for further investigation.
Speaking on the incident, the Police Public Relations Officer, Oyo State Police Command, SP Olugbenga Fadeyi, said the matter was being investigated.
“The Customs officers were in mufti. They trailed a vehicle down and in the process, a member of the proscribed NURTW in Iseyin was short. The man in question is currently recuperating at the hospital and the matter is being transferred to the state Criminal Investigation Department for further investigation, ” Fadeyi said.