Posted by News Express | 20 November 2014 | 5,429 times
Personnel of Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) and the Association of Nigeria Licenced Custom Agents (ANLCA) engaged in a free-for-all at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMIA), Lagos yesterday, leaving two cargo agents injured.
It was gathered that the trouble broke out when the Customs Area Comptroller at the airport command visited the Nigerian Aviation Handling Company’s (NAHCO) warehouse, where the agents operate.
The comptroller was alleged to have been stoned and roughly pushed out of the warehouse by the agents, because they said he came at the break time.
Four Armoured Personnel Carriers (APCs) and about eight customs patrol pick-up were drafted to the scene of the incident, after which there was sporadic shooting and teargassing by the customs men.
Public Relations Officer of ANCLA, Mr Emmanuel Njoku, however, refused to speak to newsmen on the issue, saying he was having his lunch.
But a senior official of customs, who pleaded anonymity, admitted that their officers were beaten up by the agents.
The senior official said the customs has given a directive that agents should not come to the bulk area except their men and the NAHCO officials.
The cargo agents, he said, however, declined the directive.
Following the crisis, it was gathered that the bulk breaking area of the NAHCO warehouse would be closed temporarily till normalcy returns.
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