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The new Controller of Customs in Ogun Area 1Command, Comptroller, Peter Chad Kolo has appealed to Alake and Paramount Ruler of Egba land, Oba Adedotun Aremu Gbadebo, Okukenu IV, and other traditional rulers in Ogun State to educate and enlighten their subjects particularly, the youths on the need to see Customs officers as friends who are working for the economic development of the country.
Controller Kolo stated this during his courtesy visits to Alake and the Paramount Ruller of Egbaland, Oba Adedotun Aremu Gbadebo, Agura of Gbagura, Oba Saburi Babajide Bakare and the Olu of Kobape, Oba Olufemi AllenTaylor.
He emphasized on the need for traditional rulers and all stakeholders to collaborate with and assist the Nigeria Customs Service in the fight against smuggling and economic saboteurs, adding that the craze for imported goods by Nigerians is doing no good but hampering the economic development and thereby generating more unemployments for the youths.
“I had witnessed some ugly incidents in the few weeks that I resumed in the State. There has been lost of lives through stray bullets during cross fire between Customs and smugglers and the worst thing is that the innocent lives were affected.
“This is the reason why we have to come out and appeal to our royal fathers and stakeholders for their collaboration to prevail on our youths to stop smuggling but embrace legitimate businesses. We are ready to facilitate, encourage and support legitimate trades”, Controller Kolo stressed.”
While addressing Lake and his chiefs, the Comptroller pointed out that his Command is not a killer squard but but a revenue generating agent, operating within the ambit of law that established the Service, the rules and guidelines set up by the Federal Government.
According to him, Nigeria Customs Service is not a blood thirsting organisation but a government agent that works under laid down rules and regulations hence, the need for traditional rulers, communities at the border lines, youth and other stakeholders to join hands and support the Nigeria Customs Service, particularly in Ogun State.
Disturbed by the recent killings at Ayetoro and Obafemi Owode, the new Controller said he has taken far reaching steps to stem the incesant faceoff between his officers and men and the public, saying the Customs headquarters had been briefed of all that was needed with the belief that such incidents would be a thing of the past.
In his response the Alake of Egbaland, Oba Adetotun Aremu Gbadebo pledged his support for the Customs and prayed for the new Controller to succeed in Ogun State.
Kabiyesi noted that many retired Customs officers are today traditional rulers. He cited examples of Agura of Gbagura, Oba Saburi Babajide Bakare and the Olu of Kobape, Oba Olufemi Allen Taylor saying, the new Controller is at home.
Also, in their separate responses, the Agura of Gbagura, Oba Saburi Babajide Bakare and Olu of Kobape, Oba Olufemi Allen Taylor who are also retired Customs officers pledged their supports to ensure a successful tenure for their former colleague.
Controller Kolo ended his courtesy visit at 35 Artillery Brigade Alamala, Abeokuta where he had a closed door meeting with the Brigade Commander, Brigadier-General EJ Amadasun.
He was accompanied by his Deputy Controller in charge of Administration, DC Nnadi, Deputy Controller, I .K Oladeji in charge of Intelligence, Roving B and Coordinator of Abeokuta axises, Assistant Controller (AC) Jacob Akpan, Deputy Superintendent of Customs (DSC), O.Q Ilori who is PA to Controller and the Command image maker DSC H. B Oloyede and other operatives of the service.