The Nigeria Customs Service has said that four members of the patrol
team involved in the killing of their civilian ‘friend’, Godwin Onoja,
have been detained.





It also stated that a panel set up to
investigate the killing could not conclude its investigation because the
officer, who accidentally shot Onoja, Destiny Onebamho, was receiving
medical attention after he was attacked by motorists following the
killing.





Onoja was shot by a member of the five-man Customs
patrol team while they were trying to allegedly extort N5,000 bribe from
a group of travellers coming from Europe at the Sagamu end of the
Lagos-Ore-Benin Expressway.





It was gathered that the victim was
shot during an altercation between the officers of the Federal
Operations Unit of the NCS, Ikeja, Lagos, and the travellers, who
boarded an Iyare Motors’ passenger bus travelling to Benin City from
Lagos.





A statement from the NCS Public Relations Officer, Joseph
Attah, on Tuesday, said Onebamho would be questioned by the panel once
fit to enable it conclude its investigation and recommend appropriate
actions to be taken against the operatives.





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





Attah
stated, “Following the unfortunate incident of Sunday, February 17,
2019, at the Sagamu interchange involving operatives of the Federal
Operations Unit, Zone ‘A’, which led to the death of a fellow citizen,
Mr Godwin Onoja, the Nigeria Customs Service has continued to maintain
close contact with the bereaved family.





“We are pained by this
sad development and share the grief of losing a fellow compatriot in a
seemingly avoidable circumstance. We will continue to take every
necessary step to cushion the pain associated with losing a dear one.





“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 rifle accidentally discharged and killed Onoja,
is presently receiving medical attention following the attack on him
owing to 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 actions.”





Attah added that the ongoing investigation
would be holistic and would involve looking at the weapon handling
skills of the operatives and actions that must be taken by the service
to prevent future occurrences.


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