Emotions ran high at number 9, Oyebola Close, Ikorodu, Lagos on Monday after a delegation of senior police officers visited the family home of Timilehin Ebun, a nine-year-old boy who was killed by a police stray bullet at the Mile 12 end of Ikorodu Road last Thursday.
The spokesman for the police, Damilola Adegbuyi, condoled with the family over the incident.
However, the family demanded only one thing; justice.
A relative, Mr. Adebanjo Adebunmi, said although Timilehin could not be brought back to life, the family was determined to pursue the case to a logical conclusion.
He said, “We are all parents and we know how we would feel if this happened to us. I want to assume that the gunshot was not deliberate but the fact remains that he was shot. If he (Timilehin) was sick and died, we would not mourn this much.
“However, he was playing game in his father’s car and was in a happy mood when all of a sudden he was shot dead in the presence of his parents. I believe in this country, including the police. I know the police have problems but I still believe justice can be done.
“However, if at the end, we do not get justice, we shall leave it to God who is the ultimate giver of justice. All we want for our son is justice.”
Olusegun told the police that he wanted his son’s corpse released to him as soon as possible so that it could be buried immediately.
He said the longer the corpse remained in the mortuary, the more difficult it was to get over Timilehin’s death.
Olusegun said his other son, Jide, who was inside the vehicle when Timilehin was killed, was traumatised by the incident.
He said, “I want my son’s corpse released to me as soon as possible so that we can go on with the burial. We had gone to pick up my son, Jide from the airport when Timilehin was killed inside the car on our way back.
“Jide, who schools in Canada, has been traumatised since the incident because he had always been scared of coming to Nigeria because of security challenges. As if to prove him right, the night he returned to the country, his younger brother was killed by policemen in his presence.”
Olusegun said there was the need to for them have a change of orientation.
He said whenever people were killed by policemen; there was always the tendency to cover up the crime.
“I have lived in the United States, the United Kingdom, Norway and even Canada. The way policemen behave in those countries is nothing compared to Nigeria. Here, a policeman cocks his gun and is ready to fire even before listening to you,” he said.
Adegbuyi, who was accompanied by the Area H commander, Kehinde Longe; Divisional Police Officer, Ketu, Umar Justin; Lagos State Police Command Public Relations Officer, Ngozi Braide; and the police chaplain, Paul Omotosho, said they were sent by the Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Abubakar, and the Commissioner of Police for the state command, Umar Manko.
He said there would be no cover-up, adding that the police team accused of killing Timilehin had been transferred to the SCID.
He said, “I am sorry for what has happened and we are also sorry for not coming here before now. The policemen are in my custody as we speak and I promise you that no sinner will go unpunished. We are all parents and I say that anyone who attempts to cover this crime will also lose his or her own children.
“The DPO, Pen Cinema, who was accused of killing a protester has been charged to court and is facing the music. No one is above the law. On behalf of the IG, I promise you that justice will be done.”
Source: Punch Nigeria