When David Bamshak Meshak passed an accident scene during the wee hours of Saturday near Sahad Stores in Garki Area 11, Abuja, he didn’t have any premonition that his brother was among the bodies lying dead on the road.
Having reached his destination to meet a friend, Meshak later found out that his brother, Gideon Meshack Jatau, an official of the Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC), was among the three corpses lying on the road.
Two other persons later died from injuries sustained in the accident, bringing the number of those killed to five, Daily Trust on Sunday gathered from hospital officials.
“The police called the number of Victor, one of my brothers, who was listed as next of kin on Gideon’s ID card. He, in turn, called me because I am the one with Gideon in Abuja and I went to the scene of the accident,” Menshak told our reporter in an emotion-laden voice.
“I even passed through the scene of the accident earlier but I had no idea my brother was involved,” he said.
The victims met their death around 7am on Saturday, May 18, when their vehicle, an Abuja painted taxi, was reportedly rammed into by a BMW car driven by one Dr. Femi Babatunde Oni. Distraught and seeking answers the police were not willing to provide, Meshak said he later got shocking details about the accident from the doctor that received his brother’s corpse.
“The doctor told me that the girl who was with the suspect told him that they (she and the suspect) were dragging the steering of his (the suspect) car because he refused to pay her some money.
“They were dragging the steering and mistakenly hit someone and they were then trying to run away when they hit the vehicle carrying my brother.
“We were told that the guy (suspect) said in his statement that the girl was just someone he gave a lift to. That was around 6:40-7:00am,” Meshak added.
After the accident, a mob of taxi drivers reportedly wanted to vent their anger on the suspect, Dr. Oni. They were angered by Oni’s request for a cigarette while they were all mourning the death of the victims, Meshak said.
“We then saw the police quickly leave with the guy to prevent the mob from killing him,” he added.
It was gathered that the suspect was thereafter taken to the Federal Secretariat Police Station before he was moved to SARS office because the police said they feared for his life.
Meshak accused the police of “not been all that forthcoming with us”, saying he and his brother’s colleagues were denied access to the suspect when they went to the police station.
He said, “Before going to the police station (on Monday), we went to FRSC office where they condoled with us and told us that since it is a criminal case, the police would handle it.
“When we got to the police station, we found out that we were invited at the instance of the family of the suspect and the police were attempting to broker a settlement. We thought we were invited to be briefed on the status of the case, but we were not told anything concerning the investigation. We were told that the suspect was taken to SARS because of his safety.
“One of our family members said he got the information that the family of the suspect was offering N500,000 to the families of the victims as burial expenses.”
He said the police later released the corpse, adding that they told the police that after the burial, the family would be interested in following through with the case.
“My mother lost a son in 2015 and now another son has been taken from her through someone’s recklessness. My mother is hypertensive. I am not interested in their (family of the suspect) money, I just want justice to be done,” he added.
The officials of FRSC, where the deceased worked, said “police have taken over the case because of its criminal nature.”
The FCT Police Command’s spokesperson, DSP Anjuguri Manzah, when contacted said the suspect has been charged before a court of law, following police investigation on the incident. He, however, didn’t provide any clue as to which court the suspect was charged.
Daily Trust on Sunday gathered that Gideon was buried yesterday in Mangu, Plateau State, where he hailed from.
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