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Firm denies using ambulance to convey banned tramadol

Ambulance used in to smuggle N2. 8 million Tramadol from Apapa port
FILE PHOTO: Ambulance used in to smuggle N2. 8 million Tramadol from Apapa port

* says vehicle was hijacked illegally, as it suspends driver

Medbury Medical Services, owner of the ambulance illegally used to convey 10 cartons of stolen tramadol which was arrested yesterday by officials of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), has denied involvement in the act.

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In a statement on Thursday, the company said the driver hijacked the ambulance without permission.

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It will be recalled that Customs officials from the Apapa Area Command, on Wednesday announced the arrest of two suspects caught with 10 cartons of stolen tramadol conveyed in an ambulance at Apapa ports.

Medbury said it earlier declared the whereabouts of the driver and ambulance unknown and missing before the news broke.

The company stated that its ambulance was unlawfully hijacked by the perpetrators of the condemnable act.

The company also clarified that it has immediately suspended the driver and launched investigation into how the vehicle was used for the illegal activity.

“The initial assumption was that the driver had stolen the ambulance, but we were later informed that the driver had been intercepted by Customs officers at the Port and Tramadol was discovered in the vehicle.

“We will like to clarify that the driver was at the time of the incident not authorised to move the vehicle out of the premises and acted on his own accord.

“We immediately provided a replacement, a fully equipped ambulance, as soon as we were notified of the incident and the driver involved has been suspended indefinitely, pending the report of the investigation.

“We are a law-abiding organisation and we will like to state that we are cooperating fully with the Nigerian Customs regarding this incident,” the statement read in part.

The company commended moves by the Nigeria Customs Services to further investigate the matter.

It added: “While the terminal interfaces with Nigerian Customs and the issue of investigation is ongoing, we are on standby to offer assistance within our capacity and knowledge on the issue as well as receive any useful information from the terminal on its perspective on the issue.

“The ambulance is a life-saving vehicle and was unlawfully hijacked and used to perpetuate this crime against the purpose for which it was purchased and assigned by our organisation.”

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