At least one person was feared dead, while two others were critically injured during a shoot-out which occurred between men of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) and smugglers at the early hours of Monday along the Sango-Ota/Idiroko border road.
The incident, which happened at Oke-Oda town in the Yewa South local government area of Ogun state left an unidentified personnel of the Nigerian Army dead, while two NCS personnel were also said to have been critically injured.
InfotrustNews gathered that the smugglers had engaged the Customs official in a gun duel following their insistence to confiscate four vehicles loaded with smuggled rice when negotiations had failed.Eyewitness at the incident which occurred around 8:30 Monday morning further told our correspondent that the Cunstoms’ personnel had told the smugglers to increase the “settlememts” in their negotiations before the remaining four out of their eight (8) vehicles loaded with the smuggped bags of rice could be allowed to pass.
InfotrustNews however, gathered that the demand did not go down well with the smugglers who were hell-bent on forcing their ways through.Sensing dangers dangers of an impending violence from the smugglers however, the Customs operatives allegedly called for a reinforcement from the Nigeria Army barracks at the 194 Battalion, whose personnel raced down to provide supports for the NCS men.
In the mêlée which later ensued, one personnel of the Nigerian Army was allegedly killed, while two Customs’ personnel were also critically wounded in the incident.But speaking with our Correspondent in Abeokuta ove the incident, the Customs’ Public Relations Officer (PRO), Abdullahi Maiwada confirmed that the Service had a successful operation at Oke-Odan in which three vehicles loaded with 325 bags of rice were confiscated from the smugglers.
While acknowledging that personnel of the Nigerian Army provided a backup for operatives of the Nigeria Customs Service, Maiwada however, denied any fatality either on the part of the Nigerian Army or that of the Customs Service.
The Customs PRO maintained that operatives of the Service had a smooth and successful operation which yielded positive results.