A blog reader has today reached out to MDB, narrating her ordeal in the hands of men of the under world, on her way to work on Monday. According to her, the robbery happened around 9am in the morning. Yes you read right, 9am of on Monday the 5th of November 2018.
While robbery in Lagos isn’t new, this case is peculiar because of the time of the day it happened.
The Lady who pleaded anonymity was clearly still shaken from the life threatening ordeal when she spoke to MDB. She however mustered the strength to speak to us, to alert people by sharing her story.
On Monday morning I left my house in Lekki driving to work in Surulere. It was just like any other morning except for the slight traffic I encountered just about two minutes after climbing the bridge that leads to Apongbon. While I wondered about the cause of traffic by 9am in the morning on that route, I suddenly got hit by the the car in front of me, which jolted me back to reality. I was about to react but upon looking up, I saw a man shouting and pointing a gun at the lady who drove the car. My anger immediately turned to fear when it hit me that it was a mass robbery and I was next.
Asked about how many robbers they were, she said:
I couldn’t really count but I think they where up to 3 or 4 at least and they were going from car to car. After the lady in front of me the robber moved to me. He shattered my glass angrily. He pointed the gun and started screaming for my phones which I quickly handed over to him. After collecting my phones, he started shouting ” Owo mi da, owo mi da..” meaning “Where is my money?!” I quickly gave him all I had on me without hesitation. “What about that white phone over there?” He continued. I looked and saw that he was referring to my charger. I quickly picked it up an told him it wasn’t a phone. He still asked for it and I gave it to him.
She became very emotional as she continued: “After I gave him all my valuables, he still pointed to gun and kept staring at me. At this point I began to fear for my life and started pleading, appealing to him that I cooperated and gave him all I had. After seconds or maybe minutes-I’m not sure because it seemed like forever- he moved to the next car.”
“While the robbery was going on, there were yellow buses(danfo) around with passengers but everyone was helpless because the robbers were armed. After I was robbed they moved to another car but shortly after they escaped. The bus drivers and others quickly came to me and other victims to ask how we were doing. They attempted to go after after them but in truth nothing could have being done because they were armed and were long gone.
She said that about 5 minutes after the robbery the road became free and she, along with some of the other victims drove to the point after the bridge at Apongbon where there were LASMA officials and Police Officers. “When we parked, before even narrating our ordeal, the traders around started to scream in Yoruba ” Won tu ti de o, awon omo yi tu ti bere..” (meaning they have started again). This was because from the damaged cars an shattered glass they could tell it was a robbery. According to them a similar incident happened this week.
Asked what the Police had to say about not coming to their aid despite been just about 10 minutes away, she said: “They claimed to have been unaware of the robbery and only became aware after we informed them. The Police officers together with the LASMA officers then tried to go after them but I knew it was an effort in futility. I left shortly after to my mechanic because my car was badly damaged. I had hit the car behind me just like the lady in front of me hit me after the robber shattered my glass with his gun.”
In conclusion, she said: “The guy who took my phone mistakenly picked up a call from my mum during the robbery, and the call was on for about 15 minutes till they got to their hideout. My family members were worried sick because they heard gunshots from when the robbery was going on said when the robbers got to their hideout, they rejoiced with glee at a highly successful operation. In fact, the one who had my iphone was asking about its value when they realised the call was on.”
” I decided to share my ordeal with you Moji to warn others and alert the Police. We all know that traffic robberies during festive season isn’t new, but to happen at 9 am on a Monday morning shows the audacity and desperation of these robbers. Lagos is not safe at all. I really hope the Police will do something and station men on that bridge today because this is my daily route and now I have to deal with the trauma of reliving the robbery every time I pass the bridge especially when in traffic. I’ve not been able to sleep since the incident, because I’m still terrified and remember how the robber stared coldly at me even after giving him all my valuables. I just thank God for my life. May God continue to keep us all,” she concluded.
MDB has since reached out to the Rapid Response Squad Commander Tunji Disu, and he has promised to look into it and station bikes on the bridge from early in the morning. “We are doing everything within our power at the RRS to reduce the incidences of robbery in Lagos especially this festive season. We will henceforth station our men on the bridge and investigate the matter thoroughly to see that the culprits are brought to book”, he vowed.
To be robbed by 9 am in the morning on a route that she passes daily must have been such a traumatic ordeal. I feel so bad for the Ladies and others who were involved in this robbery, which sadly would have gone unnoticed but for the MDB reader who reached out to me. I was robbed on my birthday two years ago in traffic at Apapa so I understand very well how terrifying it can be. Thankfully, the Police are on it, but even more, lets be very vigilant and careful as the Yuletide draws nigh.
May God continue to protect us all.