Some officials attached to the Federal Operations Zone A, of the Nigerian Customs Service (NCS) in Ikeja, yesterday shot and killed three residents of the Ijora Badia community of Lagos during a separate operation carried out by the police. According to eyewitness account, the customs officials, whose identities were yet unknown, had stormed the area while the police were carrying out a separate operation and shot sporadically, killing three persons.
THISDAY gathered that the customs officers were there at the invitation of some of the residents of the Hausa community, who had earlier been arrested in a raid carried out by the police. The police had earlier on Monday carried out a raid of some black spots at the Whitesand area of Ijora Badia community and arrested 10 northerners, on allegations of various offences.
Some of the Hausa community residents were said to have informed the customs officers, who stormed there to secure their release, but met stiff resistance from the community. An eyewitness account who spoke on anonymity said: “Some customs officers have killed three persons where the Divisional Police Officer of Badia Police Division was performing an operation. “The customs officers were invited by some Hausa miscreants affected by the operation because the DPO had a arrested 10 persons of Hausa extraction over alleged criminal activities.
“When the customs officers came today, they started harassing some of us. Suddenly, they started shooting at us and killed three people.” Confirming the incident, the state Police Public Relations Officer, Dolapo Badmos, a Superintendent of Police, however said only one person died, while two others are recuperating in the hospital.
She said: “The community and the police were on joint operation of raiding blackspots within the community and arresting suspected criminals yesterday. “In the process, some officers of the NCS, who were on convoy with officials of the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) had an encounter with some of the hoodlums. “They fired some shots and three people were hit by the bullets. As a result, one death was recorded while two others are receiving treatment in the hospital. Policemen are not involved.”