By Suleiman Umaru
With barely two months of touring the north central states of kwara, Niger, Kogi and Benue states which have border Communities with Benin Republic by Muhammed Uba Gabar, a former Comptroller of Seme Command and now acting Zonal Coordinator of the Ilorin based Border Drill , the Team appear to have declared total war on the smugglers operating in the region.
Accompanying him on the tour of the Border Communities in the region by Gbenga Owojaiye, an Army Lt. Col. And the Head of other security agencies in the Team which exposed them to the various villages and routes used by the smugglers to carry out nefarious trade in the region. This may have informed why the sector 3 Border Drill Management Team had to put head together to devises new strategies to forestall the activities of the smugglers. The new strategies put in place by the sector 3 Border Drill Zonal Coordinator and his Management Team to deal decisively with the smugglers , according to security watchers has started yielding the result as the dare devil Criminals are now facing harder time in the region.
This is evident going by the daily interceptions of motorcycle , popular, Bajaj, carrying Jerry cans of Premium Motor Spirit, PMS, popular Petrol , of 25 litres each or 50 Kg bags of the Asian country of Thailand parboiled rice. Investigation by The Value News show that a motor cycle operator could carry between two-4 four Jerry Cans of Petrol of 25 litres each bought from the filling stations within the Baruten local government Area for the Beninese market.
In return the motor cycle operators in the Beninese side of the Border Communities with the active connivance of their Nigerian Collaborators could carry could five to 10 bags of 50 Kg of the Asian country of Thailand parboiled rice into the border Communities market.
Funny enough most of the Mortorcyclesused in smuggling Contrabands into the Nigeria market through Kwara sate which had had fallen into the waiting hands of Muhammed’s Patrol Teams, were said to have either be registered in Lagos or Ogun states motor licensing Unit respectively. Given the way the Baja operators go about their business with the smuggled Contraband tied behind the back seat of their Bajaj give the impression that they may have received rudimentary training on the smuggling operations from those in the south west geopolitical region, particular, those operating in Ogun state, on how to beat Customs personnel to it.
Insiders told the The Value News that the last two months had been too hot for the smugglers operating in the Bordr Communities in the north central. On Sunday, March 8, 2020, the Ilorin based sector 3 Border drill Patrol Team , comprising of Customs, soldiers, Department of Immigration and Department of State Service, DSS, and Nigerian Immigrations Service, NIS, personnel, acting on Information , were said to have blocked Agunrege village, along Gwarana- Abuja axis of the notorious Baruten local government Area, regarded as smugglers haven in Kawara state.
The Magazine undercover Correspondent disclosed that the smugglers who were very happy that they have beaten Customs anti smuggling agencies personnel on the busy Gwarana- Abuja road with their Jerry Cans of Petrol for the Beninese market. They got it wrong as they were said to Fallen into the waiting hands of the sector 3 Border Drill Team who were said to be armed to the teeth and ready to open fire on any smuggler who dares to challenge them from doing their work.
Eyewitness account disclosed that on citing the Border Drill personnel at Gwarana village they knew the game was over as they were caught in between the devil and the deep blue sea. They have one option abandon the Jerry Cans of Petrol and run into the bush or the engage the Border Drill personnel in a gun battle.
Aware that anyone caught in the act would be made face the full weight of the Law, they were said to have abandoned their Babaj, and fled into the bush. The sector 3, Border Drill Patrol Team according sources may not have been borthered in pursuing the smugglers into the bush to avoid giving room to their Collaborators or Informants in the village to make arrangement to push the Jerry cans of petrol into the Beninese market, they were said to kept close watch over it.
The Border Drill Team members were said to have taken over the seven motorcycles acarrying 25 Jerry cans of Petrol, 25 litres each meant for the Beninese market.. The items were said to have been transferred to the Team operational base at Illesha Baruba, one of the Border Communities in Baruten local government of Kwara state.
The rumour of the seizure of the seven motorcycles at Gwarana village and its contents by the sector 3, Border Drill Zonal Coordinator’s men may have spread like wild fire in Baruten local government Border Communities that Sunday that other smugglers who had prepared to smuggle foreign parboiled rice and other Contrabands into the Nigeria market were force to drop the plan to void playing into the Illesh Baruba Border Drill Patrol Team who are positioned at strategic locations in the Bordr Community.
Many had described the last Sunday Operations in various parts of Baruten local government Area of Kwara sate as the worst in the state as smugglers were not given room to carry to carry out the nefarious trade. Owaijaye, an .Army Lt. Colonel reportedly said that it would pay the smugglers who may have considered the Kwara and other north central states Border Communities as a base to carry out their nefarious activities to think of better things to do as the region Border Communities are no longer a go area for them because of the tight security that had been mounted by them.
He was said to have told those that cares to listen that they are working according to the mandate given to them by Hameed Ali, a retired Army Colonel and Comptroller General, Nigerian Customs Service, NCS, that nothing should enter or leave the country.