…condemns incessant killings, attacks on Customs officers
Worried by the constant attacks by smugglers on officers of Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), the Africa Association of Professional Freight Forwarders and Logistics of Nigeria (APFFLON) has called for capital punishment for smugglers.
The association made this call in a press statement issued by its National President, Otunba Frank Ogunojemite yesterday, as the group expressed sadness over continuous attacks on men and officers of the NCS by smugglers.
Recall that operatives of Customs at Kebbi Command were, on Saturday, 26th of August, 2023, brutally attacked by smugglers resulting to the death of two officers while others escaped death by the whiskers in a similar attack in Katsina.
In a statement issued by the Kebbi Command Public Relations Officer of the Service, Mubarak Mustapha, the attack on the operatives led to the death of two officers.
In a related development, the Public Relations Officer of the Federal Operations Unit, Zone B, Kaduna, Isah Suleiman, said that Customs operatives who were on legitimate patrol duties to Dankama Area of Katsina State were also attacked.
Reacting to the development, APFFLON, through its National President, Otunba Frank Ogunojemite, expressed sadness over the incessant attacks on Customs operatives. Ogunojemite urged the Federal Government to deploy technology in the fight against smuggling.
Ogunojemite, during a media chat at APFFLON secretariat, Ikeja, vehemently condemned what he described as avoidable loss of officers manning Nigerian borders, saying that if adequate security measures were in place, most of the crimes committed on daily basis would have been curbed.
According to Ogunojemite, “it is quite unfortunate that the Nigeria Customs keep losing its personnel in series of attacks at border points. Men and officers that have families and loved once like every other Nigerian lose their precious lives as a result of ambushement and armed attacks by smugglers .The world has continued to evolve as technology is being deployed in the fight against crimes. The Federal Government should do all it could to stop minimize this worrisome trend.”
“It’s high time smugglers who brutally attack and kill officers and men of the NCS started facing capital punishment. The Federal Government should invest heavily in technology, the fight against crimes requires a whole lot, countries are deploying Artificial intelligence (AI) to curb crimes.”
“A robust relationship between the Joint Force Border Patrol heads and border Communities is very key as intelligence gathering remains one of the most efficient measures in frustrating the activities of smugglers and curbing other security crimes.”
The freight forwarding group also admonished the management of Customs to prioritize insurance policy for its officers.
“Personnel who die in active service or sustain physical or bodily injuries at their duty posts should be adequately taken care of. They must not be abandoned to their fate, they must not be deprived of their rights and privileges while their families are left to suffer”.
“For one to put his life in the line in service to motherland is a show of patriotism and absolute loyalty. Those who take up these huge tasks must be adequately equipped and taken care good care of”, Ogunojemite stated.