By Emma Nnadozie, Crime Editor
Lagos—A 40-foot container loaded with military camouflage uniforms and other suspected dangerous weapons has reportedly disappeared from Apapa Port, Lagos.
Already, the Commissioner of Police, Lagos Ports Command, Celestine Okoye, yesterday, directed his detectives to trace the location of the missing container and arrest both the importer and others connected with the importation within 24 hours.
The search for the container which came on the heels of wanton killings in the country by suspected herdsmen and kidnappers dressed in military camouflage has placed both the police and customs officials on a collision course after CP Okoye vowed to get to the root of the matter.
Vanguard learned that the container loaded with military camouflage uniforms and other dangerous items passed through the terminal operation at the Port last Friday but all efforts to block it by police detectives acting on intelligence information failed.
It was gathered that before the container disappeared from the port, policemen promptly informed the Commissioner of the move and he swiftly gave directives through a letter, that it should not be cleared pending thorough checks.
However, according to sources, after receiving the letter, Port officials at the terminal allegedly cleared the container claiming later that they contacted Marine Police before clearing the container. They alleged that the container had already left the Port before they received the letter from Police.
Piqued by this development, CP Okoye, reportedly contacted his counterpart at the Marine, who denied knowledge of the clearance.
Based on this development, sources said, the CP directed his men to get all facts relating to the container including the identity of the importer and those involved in its illegal clearance within 24 hours.
Vanguard gathered that the police bent on recovering the container, rounded up all those involved in its importation on suspicion that they might be the gang that masterminded the importation of dangerous weapons seized at the Port, not long ago.
According to the source: “All the officials at the Port involved in the deal are feeding fat on this and they believe that nobody can stop them from doing this dirty and dangerous business. Their dirty deal is what is contributing to the presence of dangerous weapons including the AK47 being used by herdsmen and deadly kidnappers.”