By Bassey Inyang in Calabar
A Pakistani, Sahid Mahmood and a Camerounian Nji Hagis Chi, have been arrested by the Nigeria Immigration Service in Cross River State.
Mahmood was allegedly smuggled into the country illegally through a forest path in Etung Local Government in the state which has common boundary with the Republic of Cameroun.
According to the Cross River State Comptroller of the Nigeria Immigration Service, Mrs. Funke Adeuyi, the Pakistani would be thoroughly screened by the Nigerian Immigration Service and other security agencies to ensure he was not dangerous or on wanted list anywhere in the world before being repatriated.
Adeuyi who briefed the media yesterday said Mahmood was smuggled on motor cycle through bush path into Etung from where he entered Ikom en-route Lagos when he was intercepted by border Immigration officials at the village of Yahe, Yala Local Government Area of the state.
“We are collaborating with other security agencies to thoroughly screen the man to make sure he is not on the wanted list of any country before he is sent back to his country because we have to be vigilant during this critical time in the country why somebody from Pakistan should want to come into the country through bush path,” she stated.
Adeuyi said the Pakistani was arrested alongside Chi who is regarded his accomplice.
She stated that the Camerounian said he met the Pakistani at the bus station in Ikom and decided to function as his guide to Lagos where he was going for an undisclosed reason.
“He was not found with anything incriminating but had enough hard currency on him to do anything he wanted to do, so we are wary of his movement in Nigeria because he has no reason to be in this country,” Adeuyi said.
She said the documents on the Pakistani indicated that he was originally bound for Duala International Airport in Cameroon.
The immigration officer said there was nothing on the Pakistani to show that he had to also visit Nigeria.
Adeuyi said the Pakistani and the Cameroonian would be screened thoroughly before they are repatriated to their countries.
According to her, it had been discovered that many routes abound through which people enter the country illegally.
However, she warned individuals and motorists to be mindful of the security risk involved in aiding and abetting smuggling of foreigners into the country.
Adeuyi said any person found to be helping people to enter Nigeria illegally would be arrested as an accomplice, and prosecuted.