By Esther Onyegbula, Faith Ake, Ebere Aham & Ufuoma Tiveruahor
Less than a week after a Mobile Police officer attached to Mountain Troop Police, killed Beauty Nnenna Macleod at Emperor’s Place in Lagos, another trigger-happy police officer has shot dead a commercial bus driver in Lagos. A police officer attached to Area E Police Command, Festac, yesterday, shot dead a yet-to-be-identified commercial bus driver at Second Rainbow Bus Stop along Oshodi/Apapa Expressway, for allegedly refusing to play ball.
According to reports, trouble started after some policemen stopped the commercial bus driver for allegedly driving against traffic in a bid to escape the traffic gridlock that has continually plagued the expressway. It was learned that an argument ensued between the two after the commercial bus driver refused to give in to his demand.
According to one of the passengers (name withheld) inside the vehicle, “the police officer stopped the driver and ordered him to reverse to the right lane or pay an undisclosed sum of money to avoid arrest. It was during an argument that the aggressive policeman shot him.”
Another eyewitness at the scene who simply identified herself as Aina said: “I saw when the bus driver took ‘one way’ and was stopped by one of the Amuwo-Odofin policemen on patrol who attempted to arrest the driver. He told the driver to pay him some money as a condition for the driver to proceed but the driver insisted that he was not paying since other drivers were engaged in the same act and nobody was arresting them.
The conductor, to support his oga, told the policeman that they had passengers to drop off and they had not made any money for the day. Angered by their resistance, the officer opened fire on the bus driver, who died on the spot.” Saturday Vanguard gathered that the conductor also got a fair dose of beating from the other policemen who pounded on him for daring to challenge their colleague who shot the driver.
Lamenting, Musa Yusuf, a motorcyclist, said “the bus driver was shot because he committed an offence of plying ‘one way’. But it’s not his fault in all truth because this road is always blocked. If he remains on that road for two hours, do you know how much he would have lost for the day? If I were in his shoes, I would have done same.
The state government should work on the road so that it can be free again. No matter what he did, the driver did not deserve to die. Is the police supposed to be asking for bribe?” It was alleged that the policemen shot sporadically to scare off aggrieved “area boys” who attempted to take laws into their hands, before the policemen carried the corpse of the driver to an undisclosed location.
When contacted, the Lagos State Police Command Spokesperson, DSP Joe Offor said he didn’t have enough facts and that he would get back to us after he received situation report from Festac Area Command. But he was yet to as at the time of filing this report.
It will be recalled that on May 10, 2015 a Superintendent of Police simply identified as Mohammed attached to the Disaster Management Unit of the Department of Operations, under the Lagos State Police Command Headquarters, Ikeja shot dead one Akeem Aranse, a tricycle in Akowonjo area of Lagos. On September 17, Mrs Udoh, a mother of four was also shot dead by Police Corporal Musefiu Aremu at Ijegun area of Lagos.
Also on October 8, 2015 another police officer shot and wounded an unarmed civilian, John Membu outside the gates of Chevy View Estate in Lekki area of Lagos. And on Sunday, 24 October, Beauty Macleod was shot dead by an officer attached to Mountain Troop Police.