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It’s a lie , we arrest seven suspects ,not destroy property -Customs PRO
The Baale of Fagbohun village, Chief Simeon Fagbohun raised the alarm that his people have fled their houses when the customs invaded their village and had yet to return .
PLATFORM TIMES gathered that residents of Fagbohun village in the Yewa South local Government area of Ogun State have fled their residences following the alleged invasion of some custom operatives in search of their slain colleagues and lost riffles .
They reportedly fled their houses to save their lives last week Wednesday after some customs operatives invaded their village on alleged reprisal attack over the death of their two officers who were reportedly killed by some suspected smugglers .
The customs officers reportedly set ablaze some houses , burnt some motorcycles and ransacked the palace of their village head .
The Baale said this on Monday while speaking with journalists in Abeokuta, the State capital .
He said the killing did not happen in their village and that the villagers did not know anything about the death of the custom.officers .
He said the killing of the officers occured in Iya Sango, village which is about 5km away to Fagbohun village .
His words” I am here to clear some misinformation that I have read in the social media about our Community, about the death of some custom officers in that area.
“It is not in Fagbohun village the custom officers were killed, it is in Iya Sango village that they killed them but, the village is now defunct, it is the Ohori people that now stay in Iya Sango , they make little settlements there and are doing farming .
“The village is in Yewa land, it is about 5km to Fagbohun village, the place they killed the custom officers is not Fagbohun, it is Iya Sango village
“This Iya Sango village is in Yewa land but Fagbohun is a village these smugglers used to pass, it is the biggest village in that axis, which has vulcanizers and schools..
“Those smugglers have a stopover in our village to fix their tyres and also eat. They stopped in a place called Eti Odo in Fagbohun village .
“Custom Officer came to our place on the 26th of this month, myself and my senior brother named Johnson Olarinde Fagbohun departed from Ilaro, I stayed in Ilaro while he went to the village , at around 7pm he called that he has been arrested by some custom officers and they were taking him.amd others to an unknown destination, I was marvelled and surprised by what he told me, when I asked what for, he told me that they told him that some smugglers killed custom officers .
“”we saw that they have burnt the house of Adeoye Fagbohun, one of the sons of Fagbohun family, he is an elder brother to me, they burnt his house with three motorcycles also, he is the one doing vulcanizing in the junction of the village where his house was, his vulcanizing machine was also burnt inside the house.
” Iya Alate’s house was also burnt, we all saw it with the Police, there were three motorcycles in that house also, the house of Nathaniel was also burnt with one motorcycle, we now saw that the remaining houses like that of the Akao family in the village, they entered the house and brought out the motorcycles in the house and burnt them, three motorcycles were burnt there also, Odunaro house, their house was not burnt but they took the motorcycles owned by people in the house and they burnt it outside the house as well, the house of the Ogundipe’s they didn’t burn their house but they brought out motorcycles from the house as well and burnt them.
“They burnt three motorcycles as well, I also saw that they went into my own palace too, they looted my palace, they didn’t burn motorcycles in front of my house but I can’t find two motorcycles in my house, also our pumping machine ,the farmers in the village bought , we want to use it for irrigation in the dry season, five pumping machines, they removed them from the cartons and we can’t find them also, the machine we used to spray herbicides and other chemicals on the farm, seven of them have been taken, about 20 cartons of them are also missing, all my doors were forced opened”.
When contacted for reaction, the Public Relations Officer of the Federal Operating Unit ,zone A, Ikeja, Lagos, Theophilus Duniya denied the allegation .
Duniya said despite that the service had lost two of its officers to the attack by the people in the area , the operatives did not take the law into their hands .
He said seven suspects were arrested with dane guns and matchets and had been put in custody as murder suspects .
He said “the incident that happened last week , some people were arrested in connection with murder as murder suspects .
“Then ,the issue of burning houses ,motorcycles and what have you, as a law enforcement agency, despite the fact that our operatives were murdered in the manner it happened ,we cannot take the law into our hands .
“In as much as we seek to have justice for the slain officers , we cannot take the laws into our hands by destroying people’s property . So, what his claims are, were not executed by our operatives .
“Operatives of Customs service never burn anybody’s house , never burnt any motorcycle , the only thing I know on authority that was done was the arrest of gun suspects that are in custody.
“We have seven people in custody , some of them were arrested with dane guns and matchets and they are really helping in our investigation .
“And the arson or whatever form.of destruction that was carried out in that village was done by mischief makers to tarnish the image of the service and our operatives . As I speak with you one riffle is still missing .”
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