Charles Nwoke, Abeokuta, Nigeria
December 4, 2020
Image courtesy of local sources, fair use.
An officer of the Nigerian Customs Service has been kidnapped in Ogun State by suspected smugglers who also carted away arms and ammunition on Thursday.
The Customs Officer identified as Taiwo Odeyemi, CA 1, was whisked away by the armed smugglers who equally vandalized one of the patrol vehicles of the security agency.
The kidnap victim, Taiwo Odeyemi is said to be the driver of one of the patrol vans used to trail the smugglers within the area.
Hammed Bukoye Oloyede, the Nigeria Customs Service Ogun State 1 Command Spokesman who confirmed the ugly incident said that a team of officers from the Nigeria Customs Service, Ogun 1 Command while on routine mobile patrol along with Olorunlere village, close to Alapoti, Ado-Odo Ota Local Government Area of Ogun State on Thursday, December 3rd, 2020, at about 12:10 in the afternoon, intercepted some vehicles loaded with bags of foreign parboiled rice.
According to the Public Relations Officer, the suspected smugglers sensing their loss on sighting the patrol team attempted to escape apprehension and eventually started shooting sporadically at the officers, adding that it later resulted in a serious gun battle between the two sides.
He said that the patrol team called for re-enforcement, but before the intervention from other units, the officers were overwhelmed due to the numeric strength of the smugglers/criminals.
“In the ensuing commotion, the team tactically withdrew to enable the arrival of the reinforcements teams.
“On the arrival of the military personnel and other units of Customs including Federal Operations Unit (FOU) as requested by the CAC, the hoodlums had already vandalized one of the official vehicles attached to the team.”
CA I (T) Taiwo J Odeyemi, an official driver to the security agency was later discovered to be missing and has not been found during the time of filing this report.
“Investigation is ongoing and effort is being made along with other security agencies and other critical stakeholders to locate the whereabouts of the missing officer and rescue him alive” he added.
“The Command is not deterred by this and will step up its offensive against those whose interest is to make profits at the expense of the nation.
“The CAC has vowed to ensure that those behind this attack face the full wrath of the law and justice,” he added.
Oloyede further disclosed that the CAC strongly warned smugglers and their abaters that the incessant attacks leave Officers with no other choice than to use full force to deal with this new set of hoodlums aggression against personnel performing their constitutional duties.