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Customs kills

Customs officially reacts to killing of Citizen Onoja, silent on retraining officers

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Following the viral circulation of a horrific video of the killing of an unarmed civilian, late Mr. Godwin Agada Onoja by an Operatives of the Federal Operations Unit Zone A, on Sunday 17th February 2019 at Shagamu Interchange, the leadership of the Nigerian Customs Service (NCS), has reacted, saying “The Service has continued to maintain close contact with the bereaved family”.

In a statement issued Tuesday afternoon in Abuja by the Service image-maker, DC Joseph Attah, Customs said “We are pained by this sad development and share the grief of losing a fellow compatriot in a seemingly avoidable circumstance. We are and will continue to take every necessary step that will cushion the pain associated with losing a dear one”.

“Consequently, the Comptroller-General of Customs Col. Hameed Ibrahim Ali (Rtd) has directed a thorough investigation into the immediate and remote causes of the incident with the view to ensuring that justice is served.

“In line with this directive, the investigation panel headed by the Zonal Coordinator Zone A, ACG Kaycee Ekekezie has interrogated and detained four members of the patrol team. The panel could not immediately conclude the investigation because the actual officer (ASCI Destiny Onebamho) whose riffle discharged is presently receiving medical attention as a result of attack following the unfortunate incident. He will face the panel as soon as he is fit to do so, to enable the panel conclude investigation and recommend appropriate action(s).

While remaining silent on the need to step up training and retraining of officers on arms handling, Attah stressed that “NCS is a reputable organization known for integrity and responsibility. In line with our corporate values, we will not shield any operative found wanting in this ongoing investigation. The Service appreciates the public concern and strong emotions drawn from the viral video with narratives that created various opinions”.

He assured that “The ongoing investigation will be holistic including looking at the weapon handling skills and actions that must be taken by the Service to possibly prevent future occurrence,” adding that “We will continue to update the public details of every action taken in the handling of this unfortunate incident”.

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