Another instance of police brutality was witnessed yesterday when a policeman accompanying a bullion van rained bullets on the white colour KIA Optima car of THISDAY Newspaper’s Acting General Manager, Advert and Marketing, Ms Bunmi Awonaya.
The incident, which occurred near the Adeniji-Adele junction on the Third Mainland Bridge, while Awonaya was driving to the office, left her in shock and trepidation.
“It was about 1:50 p.m. on the Third Mainland Bridge when I was coming to work and just before Adeniji-Adele junction, I noticed a branded bullion van in front of me with the inscription ‘Agrale’ on the body and it has the colour blue and grey and then there was a Police Escort/Patrol Van with it.
“All of a sudden, I just saw one of the policemen in the patrol van open fire at me and I was like, ‘what is happening and before I could get myself together, the second shot came. Then I stopped and they drove off,” the THISDAY AGM recalled.
Awonaya, who was visibly shaken over the incident, said she immediately lodged a complaint to the Adeniji-Adele Police Station where they promised to investigate the incident.
“I met with the DPO of Adeniji-Adele Police Station and the DCO as well and I have written a statement with them with all the description of the vehicle and the time it happened. They said they were going to look into it and probably carry out an investigation,” she said further.
Awonaya, who could not fathom what brought about such shooting by the police, said: “I was far from them, I wasn’t even near them at all. They were in front of me while I was driving behind them and I was driving on the extreme left lane of the bridge while they were on the middle lane. So, I don’t really know what they were looking for. I didn’t pose a threat to them. I was not near them and to think also that I was the only one in the car. So I don’t know when it has become a sin to be driving on the road when a bullion van is moving.
“Even the police DPO confirmed that the shots were from a long range that if it were nearer, the bullet would have penetrated the car and hit the driver. He confirmed that with the range of the shooting that I was not near them at all. So the DPO and the DCO were all short of words as to what would have warranted such action.”
Awonaya, however, demanded that a thorough investigation is carried out and the culprit dealt with accordingly to serve a deterrent to other trigger-happy police officers.