At least four persons were reportedly shot dead during a clash between men of Nigeria Customs Service and smugglers in Iseyin, the gateway town to Oke-Ogun area of Iseyin Local Government, Oyo State.
The incident happened around 4pm on Thursday, May 13, at Oja-Oba heart of the ancient town when some residents were celebrating the Eid-Fitri festival.
The four residents who were celebrating Eid-el-Fitri, got hit by stray bullets when customs officers allegedly exchanged gunfire with suspected smugglers. A fifth person was injured during the shooting.
It was gathered that the customs officers allegedly started shooting indiscriminately after intercepting smuggled goods coming through the borders into Oja-Oba. A resident of Iseyin, Kehinde Adekunle, who confirmed the incident told Daily Trust:
“It is true. The personnel started shooting after intercepted smuggled goods coming through the borders. I was around that place when the incident happened. Two old men who were celebrating Eid-el-Fitri and two other minors were affected.
“Though they were hit by stray bullets, the argument was they couldn’t have opened fire in that place full of residents. Again, there is a festival today. Those people were out to enjoy Sallah celebration and this has caused tension in the community as family and friends of those affected have started protesting.”
Also confirming the incident, another resident, Alhazan Kamorudeen who said he was on his way to Iseyin from Ibadan, the state capital, said:
“It is true. I have called my people and they said there is tension in the town now.”
The Aseyin of Iseyin land, Dr Abdulganiyy Adekunle Salau, who confirmed the figure, warned officers of Nigeria Customs Services to keep 40kilometers away from the border of the town.
Aseyin who spoke through his media aide, Semiu Azzez, described the killings of the youths on the festive day as a bad occurrence that must be critically analysed to prevent future reoccurrence.