By Godfrey Bivbere
Following the killing of a senior Customs officer by a mob Friday in retaliation to the shooting of a smuggler, the Seme Customs Command has tightened security around the border, even as the Police was alleged to have made a number of arrests in connection with the incident.
Saturady Vanguard gathered that a lot of people who went to the border with the intention of bringing in some goods were not allowed to do so. The usually busy border post was a shadow of what it used to be as officials of the Service prevented such persons from moving freely.
Public Relations Officer of the Command, Ernest Olottah, who spoke with Saturday Vanguard on the situation at the border, said “We are doing what we were doing, there is no unusual action. We have always taken security at the border post very seriously.”
Asked whether the deceased Customs officer has been buried, he refused to comment.
Similarly, he also refused to comment on the condition of the smuggler shot yesterday.
He noted that after the incident, the police have taken over and are involved in the investigation. He however said that some persons have been arrested in connection with the killing of the officer.
A statement signed by Olottah yesterday read in part, “It is worth noting that the intensification of our anti-smuggling operation which has led to the making of over 686 seizures since January 2013 has placed us on the danger of attacks like this from criminals who are being prevented from using the border for anti-economic and other nefarious activities.
“Our operatives, due to their uncompromising stance against smuggling and protecting the nation’s economy have come under series of attacks by smugglers and some unpatriotic elements who see smuggling as their right. In some cases, attempts made at disarming some of our operatives in the recent past were rebuffed,” the statement concluded.