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4 Nov 2016

Tension as Soldiers, Custom Officers Clash in Lagos

There was tension at the Nigerian Army Shopping Arena, Bolade, in the Oshodi area of Lagos State on Thursday as some officers of the Nigeria Customs Service clashed with soldiers in the market.
Punch gathered that trouble started when the customs officers traced six missing containers, suspected to have carried contraband, to the market and moved to impound them.

It was learnt that soldiers at the market prevented the customs officers from impounding the containers, which were driven into the shopping arena, commonly called Arena Market.

A resident, who identified himself only as Michael, said the soldiers insisted that the customs officers did not have the right to impound anything in the military market.

He said, “The clash happened around 9am. The customs men had wanted to impound some containers; but some soldiers resisted the move, which led to a clash between the two security agencies.

“Nobody died or sustained injury, but there was tension in the market. Business activities were disrupted. It took the intervention of the Commanding Officer, 9 Brigade, to quell the fracas, as he gave an order that his men should allow customs officers to do their job.”

The spokesperson for the 81 division of the Nigerian Army, Colonel Samuel Kingsley, said the customs men initially did not “follow due procedures,” adding that they were allowed to take the containers away when due process was followed.

The Public Relations Officer, NCS, Federal Operations Unit, Ikeja, Lagos State, Jerry Attah, confirmed that the customs seized six containers from the market, adding that the military men assisted in the arrest, and there was no clash.

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