The 81 Division of the Nigerian Army said it has intercepted three trucks with over 300 thousand cartridges for pump action rifle at Balogun/Igbogila along Igbogila Ilasa road in Ilaro, Ogun State.
The General Officer Commanding 81 Division, Major-General Enobong Udoh who briefed journalist on the seizures at the Division Headquarters in Victoria Island, Lagos said the seizures were made at about 2:58 am on 30th May, 2018 based on credible information from well meaning members of the public.
The ammunitions which were concealed on the walls and floors of the trucks were perfectly covered with metallic plates in order to beat the intelligence of security operatives.
Luck however ran out on the suspected smugglers when the Eagle eyed men of the Nigerian Army assisted by sister security agencies gave the truck a hot chase, intercepted it while the drivers and their crew fled.
Our correspondent also gathered that there are speculations that the cartridges may be from the neighbouring country of Benin Republic since the location of the Seizures is close to a border town.
At the briefing, the GOC who was represented by the commander 35 artillery Brigade Alamala, Brigadier General Olusegun Olatunde said, ” Following a tip off received from well-meaning Nigerians during Anti-Illegal Bunkering, Anti-Pipeline Vandalism and Anti-smuggling patrols, on 30 May 2018 at about 2:58am, troops of 81 Division Nigerian Army in conjunction with The Nigeria Police, Department of State Security, Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps intercepted three 5-ton trucks.
” The registration numbers of the vehicles were ANAMBRA AAH 409 ZV, LAGOS BDG 782 XU and LAGOS GGF 88 XU all loaded with over 300 thousand live cartridges, at Balogun village, along Igbogila-Ilara road, Ogun State.
“The live cartridges in cartoons were carefully concealed and sealed in the body and bottom of the trucks covered with wooden platform and metallic plates. The drivers and their crew on sighting troops abandoned their trucks and fled.”
The GOC noted that a team of the Nigerian Army are on the trail of the fleeing drivers, their crew, corroborators and sponsors as investigation is ongoing.
Udoh also appreciated the people of Lagos and Ogun states for their continued cooperation and urged them to always give timely information.
He pledged not to relent until the Area of responsibility of the 81 Division is rid of all forms of cultism, smuggling, vandalism and other violent criminal activities and elements.
He enjoined members of the public to continue to always reach out and call the numbers below or contact the nearest military barracks for timely useful information.