Recent Nigerian report confirms that 49 boxes containing 661 pump-action rifles were intercepted in Lagos by Federal Operations Unit (FOU) of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS).
According to Customs’ report, the rifles were concealed with steel doors and other merchandise goods. The guns have been revealed to have been ordered from China en route Lagos port.
The Comptroller-General of Customs, Retired Col. Hameed Alli, made this public knowledge during a press briefing on Monday.
He said Federal Operations Unit made the discovery while on patrol. They intercepted a Mark truck with registration number BUG 265 XG conveying a 40ft container with the number; PONU/825914/3 along Mile 2 Apapa Road, Lagos.
The suspects transporting the consignments were arrested. The 3 men are identified as Mr. Oscan Okafor (an importer), Mr. Sadique Mustapha and Mr. Mahmud Haruna, who also served as the clearing agent.
Col. Hameed Alli, called the importation of these 661 pump-action rifles illegal and dangerous given the porous security systems in many vulnerable parts of Nigeria.
“Government decided to prohibit the license of pump-action, therefore, the importation and transaction is totally against the law,”
“Such deadly contravention of the law is even more unacceptable considering the fragile security situation in some parts of the country.”
“Investigation has already commenced and I have directed that the dragnet should be wide enough to fish out all persons involved in the importation and clearing of the consignment.”
“Already three suspects have been arrested in connection with this illegal importation and the officers involved in the clearing of this container are with the comptroller under detention.”
He went further to say that this sad incident points to the dire urgency and determination of the Customs service to enforce laws that thoroughly monitors what is imported and exported from Nigeria.
Alli appreciated the efforts of the FOU in intercepting the 661 pump-action rifles and called on the media and all Nigerians to help the Nigerian Customs service with information that would help them achieve the goal of their jobs.