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Ex Guber Candidate Hakeem Alao Mourns With Makinde, Aseyin Over customs killings at Iseyin

Chief (Engr) Oyedele Hakeem Alao, the former Alliance for Democracy (AD) candidate in the 2019 election in Oyo State, has stated that the killing of residents in Iseyin during the gun battle by the officers of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) is appalling, and should thoroughly be investigated as he mourns with the Aseyin of Iseyin, Oba Abdulganiyu Adekunle Salau Ajinese, Governor Seyi Mákindé and the entire people of Iseyin, Oke-Ogun and Oyo State.

Alao made this known in a release by his media spokesman, Omotayo Iyanda, in Ibadan.

Alao criticised the action of the officials of the customs to engage in a shoot out in the town called it an appalling and a horrible incident that must be properly and thoroughly investigated, saying that the officers, at that point in time, should never have engaged in such a battle that would lead to the death of the Nigerian citizens considering the fragile mood of the nation, more so the uproar and condemnation that trailed the two Ibadan lawless raids by customs.

He said: “Killing four Nigerian citizens inside the town of Iseyin in a disagreement by customs official is arbitrary, appalling and nauseating.

“How on earth should customs leave the border posts and start chasing people all about in the town? Why forceful entry into the people’s shops overnight and carting away their goods? This is not only embarrassing but also an insult to our collective sensibility as citizens of this country.

“The action of the customs official chasing people around in town and killing them could lead to a serious crisis, breakdown of law and order and chaos should people react violently in a mob action against the excesses of the customs officials.

“Why do we always forget our horrible pasts so soon? Have customs forgotten the experience of the men of the Nigerian police, SARS in particular, in 2020? Our customs officials need to tread carefully and cautiously at the stage of our national history so we do not set the nation ablaze, more so there are agitations here and there.

“Customs should realise that selective operation of chasing rice smugglers in the south-west, which hardly happens in the north, is one of the issues causing suspicion, mistrust and agitations in some parts of the country.

“Therefore, in the interest of national cohesion and unity of Nigeria, customs should refrain from all conducts that would make people feel that some people are citizens than the others. We can only hope that our customs officials would not make us feel that some people are equal to others as narrated in Animal Farm by George Orwell.

“At this juncture, while appreciating the three senators from Oyo State, Senators Fatai Omotayo Buhari, Dr Muhammed Kola Balogun and Teslim Kolawole Folarin, for making a case for our people in the red chamber, Senate, against the unwholesome conducts of our officers, we charge them to please probe what led to the killing and let any offenders be brought to book.

“We, however, commiserate with our Royal father, Aseyin of Iseyin, Oba Abdulganiyu Salau, Governor Mákindé, the immediate families of the deceased and the entire people of Iseyin, Oke-Ogun and Oyo State as a whole.

“May God bless the repose of the deceased, and spare us of such incidents in the country.”

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