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Police arrest driver, owner of container that killed three

The Lagos State Commissioner of Police, Hakeem Odumosu, said on Tuesday that detectives of the state command have arrested the driver and owner of a fallen container that killed three persons on July 26, at Ilasamanja, Oshodi-Apapa Expressway, Lagos.

The deceased persons include two commuters identified as Chima Nnaekpe and Chindinma Ajoku and the bus driver Daniel Okwoje. They were killed on the aforementioned date after a container fell from the truck conveying it, on the 16-seater commercial bus discharging passengers at Ilasamanja bus stop.

PREMIUM TIMES earlier reported how the mother of one of the deceased passengers cried out for help, saying the police have refused to arrest the driver and owner of the fallen container.

Chineze Ajoku, the bereaved mother of Chidinma Ajoke, a 27-year-old staffer of the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) lamented that the police have not traced or arrested the truck driver who caused the untimely death of her daughter and two others.

Stating the cause of the accident, the Lagos State Emergency Management Agency (LASEMA) said “insistence on right of way by driver of the truck laden with another one, led to the unfortunate incident.”

The agency added that the ‘avoidable accident’ led to severe injuries sustained by six passengers, while two died on the spot. The driver of the commercial bus was thereafter confirmed dead.

Disclosing the arrest on Tuesday, Mr Odumosu said the truck driver, Okanlawon Sodiq, who fled the scene of the accident, was arrested by a team of detectives from Ilasamanja division on August 7.

“The truck owner, Wasiu Lekan ‘m’ was equally arrested for operating an unlashed container. The suspects will be prosecuted,” the Commissioner of Police said.

Similarly, the Lagos police have arrested a commercial boat driver for causing the death of 12 passengers on Kirikiri waterfront in an accident that occurred on July 29.

According to a police report, the commercial boat with the inscription ‘Mount Zion Transport’, fitted with a 150HP Yamaha outboard engine, which was conveying 20 passengers from Kirikiri to Badagry drifted to a stationary barge and capsized along Kirikiri waterfront.

Five passengers were rescued alive while 12 corpses were recovered. Three persons were missing, while the driver, Elebiju Bimbo swam to safety, the police said.

“Investigation revealed that the accident was caused by the deliberate act of the driver. There was an argument between the Deckhand (conductor) and the passengers as to the transport fare. The driver insisted on #1,500 per passenger and the passengers said they will only pay #1,200 each. Because of the #300 difference, the driver turned off the boat engine on a turbulent waterfront. A big ship passed and stirred the water, creating a wave that drifted the boat to the stationary barge. The suspect will be charged to Court,” the police said.

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