By Goodness Sunday
Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) has announced the interception of arms and ammunitions worth millions of Naira.
This revelation was made known yesterday by the acting Comptroller General of NCS, Bashir Adewale Adewale MFR at the Federal Operations Unit Zone A, Ikeja, Lagos.
Adeniyi highlighted to the Press the recent achievements of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) in the ongoing efforts to suppress smuggling and safeguard national security.
He added that “The Customs Intelligence Unit (CIU) Ports Terminal revealed the concealment of 10 dangerous arms and various rounds of live ammunition hidden inside plactic drums in a 40ft container; 3 new Pump Action rifles and one new unit of rifle, 6 new different makes of pistols, 14 empty magazines and 442 rounds of live ammunition were seized during a joint operation with the Nigerian Police, the Department of State Security, the National Drug Law Enforcement and Administration (NDLEA), and Multi Services Limited Command on the 5th of July 2023.”
He went on to say “the clearing agent, Mr. Shokunbi Olanrewaju of Schooler Global International Limited and Mr. Joseph Nwadiodor, who were expected to take delivery of the container are currently detained as suspects in connection with the seizure.
It was also revealed that when a 40ft container was subjected to 100% physical examination, it had 18 arms, packets of cartridges and rounds of live ammunition inside plastic drums; 6 different makes of pistols, 12 different makes of rifles, and 10 packets of cartridges.
Adeniyi added that “the most shocking of all, an unregistered Toyota Camry loaded with six sacks of charcoal was used to disguise three (3) pump action rifles with 174 live cartridges, fortunately the officers of the Joint Border Patrol Team Sector 2 intercepted the car on Wednesday 12 July 2023 along Owode/Ajilete Axis of Ogun State during a routine patrol.
“The driver of the vehicle, who knew the content he was conveying vis-a-vis the attendant consequences of his action before the law, jumped into the bush and escaped arrest”, he said.
“As it is, investigation into the seizures is inconclusive. The outcome of our investigations together with the seizures will be handed over to the appropriate authorities for further investigation and prosecution” stated the acting CGC.
The NCS boss also said “Illicit arms obtained by non-state actors have boosted the proliferation of small arms and ammunition across the country which drastically increased violent kidnappings, robberies, and mass killings in the society.
“To that effect, the Service had to re-strategize it’s operations while officers raised their levels of professionalism and keyed into the mantra of renewed hope aimed at facilitating legitimate trade. Still on that, the Service’s human resources and logistics are collectively harnessed to combat and prevent economic sabotage, thus new tactics have been re-injected to tackle the economic and security menace caused by recalcitrant importers and their agents.
“Therefore, importers and agents are requested to be properly guided by the import/export prohibition lists and be patriotic by making sincere declarations.”
He urged the public to see security as a collective responsibility and give information of illegal importation and cross border movement of dangerous weapons used to create mayhem in the country.