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‘No soldier was shot’ — Lagos police counters army on officers’ clash at traffic lane

‘No soldier was shot’ — Lagos police counters army on officers’ clash at traffic lane
August 10
19:43 2022

The Lagos police command says no soldier was shot during the altercation between some soldiers and police officers in the Badagry axis of the state.

Last Wednesday, some soldiers attached to Ojo military cantonment beat a police inspector, identified as Monday Orube, to death after an argument over traffic right of way in Lagos.

The argument was said to have started after three police officers, who were acting as traffic wardens, stopped a road lane in order to allow other road users pass through.

The police officers did not know that they had inadvertently stopped the lane where a bus carrying soldiers was passing through.

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The soldiers were said to have questioned the police officers on why civilians would be allowed to pass before them.

The soldiers insisted that they would pass through a one-way traffic — a development that led to an argument between the police officers and soldiers.

Following the death of the officer, some senior military officers paid a visit to Abiodun Alabi, Lagos police commissioner, over the incident.

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The army, in a statement by Olaniyi Osoba, acting deputy director of the 81 division, said it had constituted a board of inquiry to investigate the incident.

‘POLICE OFFICER SHOT AT SOLDIER’

Speaking on the incident, Umar Musa, immediate-past general commanding officer (GOC) 81 division of Nigerian Army, on Tuesday, said preliminary investigations revealed that the late police officer shot at the soldier during the altercation.

According to NAN, Musa claimed that the bullet chipped the ear of the affected soldier and narrowly missed his vital parts.

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“The other soldiers reacted to the shot fired by the police officer and this led to them beating the policeman to death,” NAN quoted Musa as saying.

‘OFFICER ONLY SHOT INTO THE AIR’

Reacting to Musa’s comment, Benjamin Hundeyin, Lagos police spokesperson, in a statement on Wednesday, said a police officer shot into the air during the altercation in a bid to make the soldiers retreat.

Hundeyin said nobody was hit by the bullet, and asked the army to present the soldier allegedly shot during the altercation.

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“The attention of the Lagos State Police Command has been drawn to a report credited to Major General Umar Musa, outgoing GOC 81 Division, claiming that a ‘police officer shot at the soldier during the altercation which clipped him in the ear but narrowly missed his vital parts’,” the statement by Hundeyin reads..

“In as much as the Lagos State Police Command is in a grieving mood and has decided to toe the line of civility, it is pertinent to stand against misinformation.

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“The fact remains that on Wednesday, August 3, 2022, at the Trade Fair area of Lagos State, about thirty privates of the Nigerian Army attacked five policemen for stopping vehicles along their lane to pave way for a heavy duty truck joining the expressway.

“After the soldiers had brutalised the ASP leading the team, taken out his magazine, and abducted two Inspectors with their rifles, the next inspector they attempted to attack fired a single shot into the air – an act that made the soldiers retreat.

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“The single shot was into the air. At no point was anyone hit. The Lagos state police command challenges the army authorities to present the soldier allegedly shot.

“While we mourn our fallen hero, and pray for the total recovery of the second abducted inspector, we urge Nigerians to disregard the claim that a soldier was shot as there is absolutely no truth to it.

“Meanwhile, the Lagos state police command eagerly awaits the report of the panel of inquiry set up by the Nigerian Army to investigate the immediate and remote cause of the incident.”



This story is published in partnership with Report for the World, a global service program that supports local public interest journalism.

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