By Cyriacus Nnaji
A17 years old Jamiu Olaniyi, a Lagos based auto electrician has recounted his ordeal in the hands of policemen attached to Isasi Police Station, Lagos State Police Command.
He said that he was arrested alongside his friend, Babatunde Ibrahim, on Friday, June 19, 2020, close to their residence in Igbolerin area at about 10: pm. He said that they came out to buy bread and milk when the policemen operating in a yellow commercial bus bundled them inside the bus and took them to the station where they were dumped in the cell. Narrating his experience
He said: “That night, we were very hungry me and my friend. We came out and bought bread and cowbell milk. As we were going home, we saw a yellow commercial vehicle, they parked and shouted stop there and enter the vehicle. As we were standing with fear, the man sitting in the front of the vehicle asked his boys to bundle us inside the vehicle. They drove us to different places, arresting more people. Those who were able to pay from N 5000 and above were allowed to go that night. We don’t have any money with us, they dumped us in the cell and told us to stay there and eat the bread and milk”.
He further explained that at the station, they were told to bring N 11,000 for their bail. He said that after spending 24 hours in the cell, they were brought out to wash the station toilet and sweep the offices, with the promise that they would be released after doing the job. He said that after doing all the work, they were thrown back into the cell.
Speaking further, he said: “The next day, our relations came. They were begging the officers but they refused. They insisted on collecting N 11,000, from us. My mother was very sick and I am still learning the job. In the evening, they brought us out and told us to wash the toilets and sweep the offices, that they would release us after doing the work. Surprisingly, after doing all the work, they returned us to the cell. We paid N 7000 before they released us”.
Olaniyi contacted our reporter while he was still in detention. The reporter requested to speak with any of the officers. A woman police that spoke with the reporter, whom he later identified as Woman Sergeant Elizabeth Sauzo, told him to come to the station. The reporter further contacted the Lagos State Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), DSP, Bala Elkana. He requested that the reporter should send him the phone number of the detained boy, to enable him speak with the officers, but all calls he made to the line mate brick walls as the officers forcefully snatched the phone and damaged it in the process. After he was released, the Spokesman got him on phone and he narrated how he was released.
In a text message sent to our reporter by the PPRO, he said that he is interested in the matter.
On Saturday, June 19, the reporter went to the station with the electrician. Woman Sergeant Sauzo took the reporter and the electrician before the Operations Officer.
A mid drama unfolded in the office, as the Ops officer, DSP Godwin, asked the electrician who arrested him, he told him that he was the one sitting in front of the commercial vehicle, and also the person that ordered that they be thrown inside the vehicle. DSP David denied that he was not on duty on the faithful day, but Sgt. Sauzo told him that it was his team that brought the boys in. He checked the list of detainees and saw the two names.
He apologized to the victim and blames the action on his boys. He immediately returned the N7000 collected for bail to the electrician.