From Laide Raheem, Abeokuta
Two suspected smugglers were confirmed dead, while 10 customs operatives, including soldiers and civilians sustained gunshot injuries, as they allegedly attacked officials of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), Ogun 1 Command at Oja-Odan in Yewa North Local Government Area of Ogun State in the early hours of Thursday.
A statement issued by the command spokesman, DSC Bukoye Oloyede, on Friday, said the patrol team had stormed a warehouse in the area to evacuate about 320 bags of foreign parboiled rice of 50kg each out of the large number stockpiled in a building.
It read: “At 2a.m of Thursday, 6th of May, 2021, officers and men of Nigeria Customs Service, Ogun I Command, military personnel were on information patrol to Oja-Odan, Yewa North of Ogun State.
“Based on credible intelligence, the patrol team intercepted about three hundred and twenty of bags of foreign parboiled rice of 50kg each out of the large number stockpiled in a building around the said area.
“During evacuation of the said rice, some die-hard smugglers aided by unscrupulous elements and hoodlums in their numbers and armed with sophisticated weapons shot and attacked the patrol team.
“They shot sporadically at officers. Unfortunately, four Customs operatives, one soldier and five civilians assisting in the evacuation sustained gunshot injuries. They were immediately rushed to the hospital for proper medical attention and are currently responding to treatment.The patrol team repressed the attack by gunning down two of the hoodlums and left many others with gunshot injuries.
“The team succeeded in evacuating the aforementioned items, arrested one suspect, Mr. Taiye Kujo and six motorcycles used by the suspected smugglers, and conveyed all to the Customs House at Idiroko”