Protest rocks Sango Ota as Customs raids shops, seizes rice


Sango Ota in Ogun State was locked down on Wednesday morning after agents of the Nigeria Customs Service raided several shops and seized bags of rice.

Eyewitnesses said the Customs officers alleged that the rice was suspected to have been smuggled into the country through land routes.

They did not, however, provide any court warrant authorising the search and seizure of the bags of rice.

Access roads in the industrial city were blocked for hours as protesters blocked access routes.

Road users had a difficult time on the roads as many had to trek long distances.

Attempts to obtain comments from the service failed.

The Customs officers’ action highlights a major Nigerian challenge of law enforcement agents acting outside constitutional provisions in a brazen show of impunity.

During the Yuletide, Customs officers seized bags of rice from travellers on major highways. Their claim was that the rice was suspected to be smuggled goods and as such they had the power to impound them.



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