The Ogun State Command of the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) yesterday arrested no fewer than 30 illegal immigrants, mainly Nigeriens and Togolese.
The agency's action was geared towards thwarting any attempt by the dreaded Boko Haram sect to infiltrate the state.
LEADERSHIP gathered that the officials of the NIS went on the operation at about 9am yesterday, picking up the alleged illegal immigrants from areas such as Oke-Ilewo and Ibara in Abeokuta metropolis.
During the raid, armed immigration officials grabbed the fleeing illegal immigrants from streets and compounds around the area.
One of the arrested immigrants, Garuba Sheu , told LEADERSHIP that he was from Kano State and not a Nigerien as claimed by the NIS.
"I am a Nigerian from Kano State and I have been in this part of the country for almost six years now, so I do not understand why they will now tag me as non-Nigerian.
"My wife and children are at Sabo area in Abeokuta. I only came to Oke- Ilewo to meet a customer that I want to help in digging a well before I was arrested," he explained.
A senior officer who did not want his name mentioned told LEADERSHIP that what the command did was to arrest suspected immigrants, but that during interrogation, those that were from the country would be allowed to go while non-Nigerians might be repatriated.
When LEADERSHIP visited the command's headquarters in Oke-mosan, the controller, Dr. P. N. Uwasirike said the situation in the country required such an action.
He said the raid was not done with any inkling that there were Boko Haram members in the state, but that it was a routine assignment which the command carried out every now and then.
“Few weeks ago, we paraded some illegal Indian immigrants that were arreste d from Ewekoro area of the state. Also last week, we paraded some Togolese that were involved in child trafficking, so this thing we are doing is part of our constitutional duty,” he explained.