Lagosian robbed by Nigeria police officers seeks justice

Police officers sort rumpled naira notes made from extorting motorists and other citizens

Olumide Aderibigbe was on his way to buy food with of a friend when armed policemen in mufti robbed them at gun point. He reported to the police authorities but they are not acting on it.

Read Olumide’s story:
“Around 9pm on Thursday, my friend and I were, walking towards Maryland Bus Stop to get food when two men on a motorcycle double-crossed us and ordered us to empty our pockets.

“One of the men remained on the motorcycle while the other came down and pointed a gun at us. The gun was wrapped with a newspaper but the barrel pointed out and I could see that it was a berretta pistol.”

Olumide said he told the men he had little money on him and pleaded with them to leave him alone but the men were reluctant.

“All I had on me was N400 which I immediately gave to them. They were about to go when they saw the shape of my phone protruding from my pocket and probably thought it was money.

“The guy with the gun demanded that I hand over my phone and I pleaded with him that I couldn’t because I had just bought the phone and hadn’t even finished paying for it.

“The man pulled down my trousers and while he was struggling with my belt, he attempted to shoot me but the gun got jammed. As he was attempting to fix the gun, I quickly kicked the gun away from him and it fell on the floor and we started fighting.

“One of them bit me in the chest while another one picked up a piece of wood and started beating me with it.”

While Olumide was fighting with the man, his friend seized the opportunity to escape.

“The incident excited some people who came closer to see what was happening. Idi-Iroko end of Ikorodu Road has no functional traffic light, so people could not really see what was going on. They were scared of coming close but I kept on shouting, ‘please save me, armed robbers want to kill me!”

Olumide said a motorist summed up courage to intervene and separated him and the armed man from fighting but the incident took a sudden twist.

“The two men identified themselves as policemen and they said they would take me along with them to their station after telling people that I was an armed robber and they came to arrest me.

“I begged the crowd not to allow the men to take me away because I feared they would kill me the moment we left there.

“Luckily for me, because I live in the area, some of the people there recognised me and my neighbour who was there, immediately invited policemen from the Anthony Police Division to intervene.”

They were all moved to the station.

“The policeman on duty at the station, one Mr. Williams Osaboro, an assistant superintendent of police, told me to leave because it was around 11pm. He promised to handle the matter and asked me to report the next day and to make a statement.

“Around 2am I saw the same policemen near my compound looking for something but I was not really sure what it was.

“It was the next morning that I discovered that it was their identity cards that they were looking for.Unfortunately for them, they did not see the cards as one of my neighbours had taken them.”

It was gathered that the names on the police identity cards and expired driving licence respectively were; Mr. Junaidu Yahaya, a police corporal with force number, 366374 and one Chukwusa Anthony.

Olumide said on getting to the police station the next day, he was disappointed with the manner the police addressed the situation.

“When I got to the station, the policeman on duty told me to leave, saying that the case had been sorted out and I should be thankful to God that I wasn’t killed.

“I further learnt that the policeman had been released without even making a statement and their gun was returned to them.”

But Olumide is not giving up. He is urging the police authorities to look into the matter.

“Why would policemen engage in robbery? It’s very disheartening because these are people charged with the duty of fighting crime yet they go about robbing people. I want the police authorities to do something about this. I know the identity of the man who robbed me,” he said angrily.

It was however learnt that the Divisional Police Officer, Mr. Ademola Raji, had got wind of the situation and might have ordered an investigation into the sad issue.