The Seme border command of the Nigeria Customs Service has declared total war on smugglers, even as the commands area controller, Alhaji Alli Wakili flags-off what he called “operation compliant” to stem the tide of deviance on the path of daredevil smugglers.
Addressing traditional rulers, community leaders and members of the Seme border community last week, Wakili, a Comptroller of Customs red the riot act to the smugglers and their patrons in what appears to be a reaction to the recent attack on some officers of the command.
Recently, miscreants and smugglers had attacked some customs officers who had gone to move two trucks containing contraband. Although no live was lost and no injury was unstained by any officer but the controller vowed to put an end to such incidences.
The Controller acknowledged that he had out of respect for the traditional rulers in the areas conceded certain things in the past, but lamented that the era of treating Nigeria Customs Service laws with impunity was gone.
He vowed to use relevant aspects of the Customs and Excise Management Act to deal with recalcitrant smugglers and their collaborators, even as he disclosed that the town hall meeting with stakeholder in the border was at the instance of the traditional rulers in the border.
“ I gladly acceded to this town hall meeting because it will afford us the opportunity to inform majority of those Nigerians who are making a living here who are law abiding of the existing relevant law and send a signal to those of them that are persistent that the mere fact that I assisted to release their goods and the accused persons is not out of cowardice”, Wakili declared.
He told the mammoth crowd that turned up for the meeting that he was protected under the law to deal with any act that is detrimental to the objectives of customs and the nation’s integrity.
He consequently declared that henceforth the command would become too hot for smugglers and their backers.