A total of nine suspects have so far been arrested by the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) and will soon be charged to court, in connection with the seizure of Tramadol tablets loaded in an ambulance vehicle confirmed to have been hired by terminal operators; APM Terminal for ambulance services.
Shipping Position Daily recalls that the Apapa Area Command of the Nigeria Customs Service had announced the interception of an ambulance conveying 10 cartons of 225miligrammes of Tramadol in Apapa port.
It said that the drugs were stolen from a container waiting for examination inside the port in Apapa.
The Customs added that the ambulance belonging to Medbury Medical Service was intercepted with the drugs while the driver was trying to smuggle them out of the port using sirens.
Initially, two suspects namely: Michael Ajibade and Olatunde Emmanuel were arrested in connection with the seizure.
However, in a document cited by our correspondent recently, the Customs Area Controller (CAC) Apapa, Comptroller Abba Kura revealed that investigations were still ongoing with nine suspects already under custody and awaiting arraignment in the court.
The CAC also told the officers of the commencement of destruction of seized Tramadol tablets, even as he disclosed that the interception of the APMT ambulance laden with cartons of tramadol must have prompted the visit of the presidential committee on the destruction and the consequent commencement of the destruction of the previously seized containers.
Kura therefore called for caution and diligence by all examination and releasing officers that the releasing of goods without due process shall not be tolerated any longer.
He also directed that due process and diligence must be followed in the clearance of all export declarations and all required certifications must be strictly adhered to.
The document further revealed that a grand total of 4,552 containers exited out of Apapa main gate out of the 4, 552 only 360 went through scanning machines, 2418 went through physical examination while 214 containers were on bond and transfer with 496 containers gated out to other command.
When contacted for confirmation of the arrest of the nine suspects involved in the Tramadol scandal ,the Public Relations Officer of Apapa Command; Assistant Superintendent Nkiru Nwala confirmed that investigation is on-going, adding that as soon as the investigation is concluded the public will be told.
“Investigation is ongoing and by the time investigation is concluded, you will be briefed, this is a continuous investigation, so if anybody is found culpable or mentioned, such a person will be called”, she assured.