Angry youths, Customs clash in Kwara over attempt to arrest smuggler

Customs operatives storm Ayetoro, shooting ‘as if ordered to wipe out the community’ 
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Operatives of the Nigeria Customs Services (NCS) on Wednesday night in Ilorin, Kwara State, clashed with some aggrieved youth over an attempt to arrest a trailer driver who was allegedly carrying contraband goods.

The incident occurred around 9pm at the Offa Garage area in Ilorin.

An eyewitness, Mohammed, who spoke with reporters, said the Customs officials chased the trailer to the area and started shooting when it was close to the roundabout of Offa Garage.

“They shot at the tires and the trailer driver lost control. They didn’t want residents to interfere but this arrogance needs to stop. People are suffering, we don’t want security agents killing us again. We all came out and they went to reinforce with three additional vans but we stood our ground. They later checked the trailer and saw that it was chicken feed inside,” Mohammed said. 

Another resident, who refused to disclose his name, collaborated Mohammed’s account and queried why Customs could be firing indiscriminately in a highly populated area.

“This is how they will tell us it is a stray bullet but there won’t be a stray bullet if they don’t fire indiscriminately within a highly-populated area like this. If they had done their jobs well, there wouldn’t be any contraband goods in the cities,” he said.

Spokesman of the Kwara Customs Command, Zakari Chado, confirmed the incident. He, however, denied that officers fired at the tires of the trailer.

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