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14 Jun 2018

Heartbreaking story of how tricycle operator died for failing to offer police N100 bribe

A tricycle operator, Master Chinedu Samuel Agu has been allegedly killed by a police Sergeant, simply identified as Magaji over his refusal to offer N100 meant to be for ‘settlement’ to police officers at a checkpoint in Onitsha.

It was gathered that Sergeant Magaji and two of his colleagues from Bridge Head Police Division, Onitsha stopped Agu around Niger Street, Onitsha but decided to molest him when he refused to offer them N100 as settlement.

Dede Uzor, a rights activist in Onitsha said it was in the process of beating Agu that one of the policemen pushed him out of his tricycle, into an on-coming vehicle, causing his death.
The incident which happened last week Friday led to the arrest of Sergeant Mogaji.

A petition by Human Rights Defenders of Nigeria (HRDN) to the Anambra State police commissioner, Mr Umar Garba has called for investigation into the death of the 22-year-old transporter, while also calling for necessary action against the erring police officers.

In a petition signed by the group’s Chairman, Uzor, he described the death of Agu as despicable.

The group said, “The brutal killing took place on 8th June 2018 around 3.20pm opposite Bridge Head Wood market just few meters from Bridge Head Police Division.

“Citizen Chinedu Samuel Agu was forcefully ejected from his Keke and kicked with gun butt into an upcoming vehicle which led to his instant death.

“The officers who perpetrated this heinous crimes were aided by the Divisional police officer.”

The group regretted that that even though the culprits were arrested, they were never questioned or interrogated over their despicable and unpolicemanly role in the death of Agu.

It further lamented that the family of Agu was invited by the DPO, and told to their amazement that the detained Sergeant Magaji had escaped from lawful police detention and pleaded with the family to proceed to the mortuary to carry their deceased for burial.

The group said such would not be accepted, while urging the police commissioner to use his good office to ensure justice for the deceased by punishing the culprits.

Meanwhile, the Anambra State police command has reacted to the death of the transporter.

SP Haruna Mohammed, spokesperson of the command said the story as told by the rights group was totally false.

Mohammed said, “The suspect in question was not murdered by the Police, he was smoking dry leaves suspected to be Indian hemp and on sighting the police took to his heel but was knocked down by a moving truck when crossing the highway.

“He was rushed to the hospital for medical attention but was certified dead by a medical doctor. Meanwhile, the driver of the truck was arrested and case is under investigation.”

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