News The African Way

Nigerian Journalist Seeks Police Protection From Customs-Aided Smugglers

A Nigeria Journalist, Executive Director and Chairman, Editorial Board of Badagry Prime, a news magazine, Otunba Yomi Olomofe, has appealed to the Inspector General of Police, Solomon Arase, to secure his life and that of his family.

He made the appeal while narrating his ordeal in the hands of smugglers around the Seme border area of Badagry in Lagos State, Southwest Nigeria.

Olomofe, who spoke with newsmen on Sunday from his hospital bed in Lagos, explained that the unfortunate incident happened on June 25 in the presence of officers of the Nigerian Customs Service within the premises of the Seme Command

The Journalist who was beaten to a pulp with his eyes swollen said he lost some items including three smartphones which he valued at about N500,000, a gold wrist watch and some amount of money.

Narrating how he narrowly escaped death, Olomofe said he was in company of another journalist colleague during a visit to the command when some smugglers, who claimed journalists have been writing negative stories about them, pounced on him, beating him to stupor.

He noted that he suspected a set-up because he was at the Seme Command on the invitation of the authority of the Service.

He said: “I wonder how anybody could have been waiting for me there. How did they know that I will be there.

“They were beating me and they were threatening to kill any journalist that writes any story about them. I was there with the correspondent of Tide Newspaper.

“A lot of my belongings were missing, my three phones, my gold wrist watch was taken away and all the money with me on that day was taken away. I cannot recollect how much it was but I had enough cash on me that fateful day.

“Thank God a friend from Rotary Club came to take me away. I would have been dead because I was left there almost lifeless.

“This happened within the Customs premises and I don’t know what they might do again.

“My life is not safe and that is why I am appealing to the police to come to my rescue. I am fully resident in Badagry. My family lives with me. I have my parents, wife and children in Badagry.

“These hoodlums are not unknown. They are known to everybody, but they are above the law.

“They even told me that they have killed many people and nothing happened.”

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