The Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) made a major breakthrough in its effort to prevent the smuggling of arms and ammunitions through the country’s borders as its operatives intercepted a cache of 30,000 live cartridges at the border town of Saki in Oyo State.
The cartridges were being transported to Ibadan from neighboring Benin Republic.
They were neatly concealed under tubers of yam, cassava and yam flour but still could not beat the vigilance of men of the Customs Service as they stopped the white Toyota Hiace bus conveying the items at Oje-Owode on the Saki/Ago-Are road.
The bus driver, Abdulraheem Adegoke (45), was promptly arrested.
Oyo/Osun Customs Area Commander Richard Oteri told reporters yesterday in Ibadan that the items were packed in 20 cartons.
He said a team, led by S.C. Okoli, arrested the bus with registration number: KW 286 SHH, on Monday.
It would also be recalled that last May, the command seized 56,750 rounds of live cartridges on the same route.
Oteri said the seizure was commendable, considering the country’s security challenges, adding: “We are determined to make Oyo/Osun Command a no-hiding place for their nefarious activities and promise trade facilitation to legitimate businessmen and women.
“We will continue to partner security agencies to make the command and the country a safe place”.
Adegoke said he did not know that live cartridges were hidden in the vehicle, adding that he was only hired to help transport the goods to Ibadan.
Oteri handed the items and driver over to the police.
An elated Deputy Commissioner of Police Musa Kimo hailed the Customs officers, describing them as “go-getters and highly patriotic”.
He assured them that the matter would be investigated and the culprits prosecuted.