The Nigerian Customs Service has provided some explanations on what transpired between its officers and some passengers which led to the untimely death of one Mr Godwin on Monday morning at Shagamu Interchange along Lagos-Ibadan Expressway, South-west, Nigeria.
In a press statement sent to Platform Reporters on Monday, the Customs National Public Relations Officer, Deputy Comptroller Joseph Attah stated that customs authority regretted the unfortunate incident which resulted to loss of life.
Attah in his press release stated as follows: “The attention of Nigeria Customs Service has been drawn to a disturbing video going viral with conflicting narratives.
“While it is painful and totally unnecessary to loose life in anti-smuggling operations, today at Shagamu interchange along Ijebu Ode, attempt to obstruct lawful performance of duty by passengers of a commercial bus (a white Toyota Hiace) suspected to be carrying bales of used clothing led to the death of a young man (Godwin) and serious injury of a Customs Officer, ASC1, Destiny Onebamho.
“Contrary to some narratives, the young man was not a passenger of the bus but a good citizen who always come to fetch water for Customs Patrol men anytime they return to the base.
“Preliminary finding indicate that it was during the skirmishes and struggle to disarm the Officer that the riffle discharged and hit the friend of the Customs (Godwin) who lost his life. The Service is already in touch with the bereaved family.
“Sadly, it should be noted that while attention shifted to the dead and the wounded, the passengers who filmed with inciting commentaries boarded their vehicle and left, leaving the wrong impression that it was one of them that was killed.
“While the wounded Officer is under intensive care at the hospital, the patrol team has been recalled to the office for further investigation”.
Meanwhile several reactions have been trailing the incident with many Nigerians condemning the action of customs particularly the trigger-happy officer who released the shot that killed the innocent young man.
Others are calling on customs authority to ensure adequate compensation is paid to the family of the deceased and equally conduct proper investigations into the matter and ensure it sanctions the officer in question in order to serve as a deterrent to other trigger-happy customs officers.