She was nude on a bed, writhing in excruciating pains. The top layer of her skin was burnt from her face to her toes, preventing her from opening her eyes.
The only position she could maintain was to lie face –up. Any attempt to change that position made her groan with tears flowing freely down her cheeks.
Unable to withstand the pains, she finally bowed to death ,on November 21, 2020.
BAPTISM OF FIRE
She was simply identified as Rabi, a lady in her 20s. She had gone to visit one Mohammed Yusuf, last Wednesday, at Monkey Village, in Sattelitte Town area of Lagos State, only to be confronted with an unimaginable scenario.
Two ladies : Jemila Ibrahim, 19 and Fatima Mohammed, 21, stormed the house, threatening to raze it down. By the way, one of them, Fatima, was Yusuf’s former girlfriend. She was said to have earlier threatened to deal with any lady seen around him.
Eye witnesses said Jemila sprayed some liquid substance later discovered to be fuel, around the apartment and thereafter , lit fire from a lighter she collected from her friend, Fatima.
While that was going on, confused Rabi, put a call to Yusuf , who works as a labourer in one of the companies in Monkey Village.
ACT OF BRAVERY
Without much ado, Yusuf, dashed into the burning apartment on arrival , where he saw Rabi burning. Like a movie scenario, he raised the unconscious lady in his arms and staggered outside, to the cheers of onlookers.
Rabi was said to have been rushed to the Nigerian Navy Reference Hospital in Satellite, from where Crime Guard reliably gathered that she was moved to an undisclosed house , for further treatment, apparently due to lack of funds to pay her bills. Unfortunately, the orthodox treatment could not resuscitate her as she gave up the ghost, three days later.
POLICE TO THE RESCUE
Crime Guard gathered that after Jemila set her ex lover’s apartment ablaze, she remained at the spot, waiting for the outcome of her action. Angry residents were said to have attacked her. But for the timely intervention of policemen from Satellitte division led by the Divisional Police Officer, CSP Chike , she would have been lynched.
Crime Guard also gathered that there was pressure on the Police to release Jemila and her accomplice, but that they (Police) maintained that the outcome of the victim’s condition would determine such move. However, when news of Rabi’s death filtered in, Jemila and Fatima were transferred to the State Criminal Investigation and Intelligence Department, SCIID Yaba.
WHY I DID IT
During interrogation, 19-year-old Jemila, who hails from Katsina State, said her intention was never to kill her successor but to threaten her former boyfriend.
Asked why she carried out such action, she said: “ Mohammed promised to marry me. We have been going out for long. But he dumped me for the new girl he met.
I was jealous and could not stand seeing him with a another girl. We live in the same community and I used to get information of his escapades with different women. My friends gingered me to do it. They said they won’t take such. One of them, Fatima, accompanied me there that day. She was the one that handed me the lighter which I stroke on the fuel.
Asked if she was aware someone was in the apartment, she replied , “ yes” and kept mum.
But her alleged accomplice, Fatima, 21, denied handing her the lighter.
WHY I LEFT JEMILA
Crime Guard traced Mohammed to a private hospital in Surulere where he was receiving treatment from the burns he sustained while trying to save Rabi. His legs were badly affected.
Mohammed, 35, from Sokoto State, disclosed that he had the intention to marry Jemilla , even though he has a wife back home.
But he revealed that he changed his mind when he discovered that she was not faithful.
According to him: “ Walahi, I wanted to marry her(Jemila). When I informed her I was travelling two months ago, she begged me to give her some money , since she didn’t have any other man. I managed to give her N25,000 because of my intention to marry her and for her not to misbehave. But I got information from friends that she was philandering about. When I called her , she did not deny it. She said she had found herself another man. I told her point blank that I was no longer interested in the relationship. When I returned , I distanced myself from her.”
“I met Rabi recently. We were only discussing on phone and had never visited my place. She lived in Apapa. She called me on phone that morning to inform that she missed the commercial bus she was to travel in, to Jos , Plateau State. She said she would like to stay in my place till evening , so as to join night bus, since my place was close to the bus terminal.”
“She came before 7am while I was preparing to go to work. Barely had I settled down at my work place than I was informed that Jemila had set my apartment on fire.”
“I rushed home and went for Rabi’s rescue. Unfortunately she could not make it. When I spoke with Rabi on the phone before she died, she said all that happened wasn’t my fault. I believe it was the devil’s handiwork because Rabi said she just stood watching while they sprayed the apartment with fuel and lit in on fire. No one knew why she didn’t make any move to run. I just hope I will be able to walk again because my feet were badly affected.”
Spokesman for the Lagos State Police Command, SP Muyiwa Adejobi , who confirmed arrest of Jemila and her friend , Fatima, said, “ the Commissioner of Police, Lagos State Command, CP Hakeem Odumosu, condemned the act. He has ordered that the matter be transferred to the State CIID, for discreet investigation. The CP also vowed to go after those who engage in crimes and social vices, in order to rid Lagos State off criminals and criminality.
“The police boss however encouraged Lagosians to shun taking laws into their hands, noting that jungle justice will only truncate the administration of justice and such could be counterproductive.”
@ Vanguard Newspaper