28 April 2014, Lagos – New facts have emerged in the killing, last Friday, of a tanker driver simply identified as Lekan, allegedly by a naval personnel.
THISDAY yesterday gathered from security sources that the suspected naval personnel had absconded with the expended pellets to evade arrest.
However, the petroleum marketers association in Lagos has threatened to go on a nationwide strike over the death of their member in the hands of the fleeing naval personnel.
The naval officer was said to have shot dead the tanker driver in anger following the refusal of the deceased to part with N500 gratification.
Although the police have since taken away the corpse and deposited it at the morgue, attempts to arrest the errant naval personnel has proved to be unsuccessful as at press time.
Police sources, who spoke to THISDAY, said the police could not make any arrest unless the navy identifies the suspect, arrests him and then hands him over to the police for prosecution.
The state Police Public Relations Officer, Ngozi Braide, a Deputy Superintendent of Police, also said she was not aware if the suspect had been arrested.
She said: “It is a criminal offence, thus the police is involved in the investigation. When we were called in, we took the corpse to the morgue.”
Meanwhile, the Commander, Nigerian Navy Ship (NNS) Beecroft, Commodore Ovenseri Uwadaie, had in an earlier interview with THISDAY stressed that the navy would unravel the identity of the suspect and ensure his arrest and eventual prosecution by the police.
The development, which led to the suspension of the loading of petroleum products from the loading bays in Apapa and triggered fears of possible scarcity, was further worsened with the threat of a strike by the marketers.
One of the marketers disclosed that they lost billions of naira just in two days that the loading quays were shut down.
He said: “Since the incident happened, we have not loaded any product and tomorrow (Monday) will determine our next line of action but already, the strike is hovering in the background.”
In another incident, the police have distanced themselves from the inhumane act committed by one riot policeman identified as Augustine, against an eight-year-old girl, Amarachi Abakwuru.
THISDAY last Saturday exclusively reported that the suspect had attempted to sexually abuse the minor at a Ketu neighbourhood. But when the bid to rape the child failed, the police corporal in frustration was said to have tied her up and broken her head.
While the victim’s parents, Mr. Patrick and Mrs. Nkiru Abakwuru, continue to clamour for justice for their daughter, who is currently writhing in pains at the hospital, the Lagos State Police Command said investigations have begun.
Braide said: “I heard of that wicked act and we have started investigation. I contacted the commander in charge of Mopol 22, which is where the complainant alleged the suspect works.
“The commader said there was no such name or identity in his squadron. But we have sent signals to other police departments and stations to ascertain if this man is actually a serving policeman.
“That act is inhuman and whoever did that will never go unpunished. The command is committed to seeing that the culprit is brought to book.”
– This Day