Controversy is now surrounding the death of 33 years old Dauda Danladi as his family is claiming that he died in police custody following his arrest by operatives of the Yelwa Division of the Bauchi State Command which is claiming that the man died of asthma attack.
The state Commissioner of Police, Sylvester Abiodun Alabi while reacting to the claim of the family said that, there was no iota of truth in the claim by the family saying that, “nobody died in Police custody anywhere in the Command.”
The CP said that, “Some people were arrested with locally made revolver pistol with ammunition, 5 of them, 3 were released because they were not linked with the issue while the other ones are still in our custody.”
The Police Commissioner further said that, “the person that died was not even part of them, he was about 200 meters away from them, it was when he was gasping for breath in his business place that he was rushed to the hospital where he died. The Police helped him to the hospital because he was gasping for breath.”
“If Police did not assist now, it would be another case, Police now assist again na wahala, they are claiming he died in our custody, haba! (sic),” Abiodun Alabi exclaimed.
However, the immediate younger sister of the deceased, while narrating what happened said “I live in Kagadama, Thursday night, his wife called me few minutes past 9pm and told me what happened that the police had arrested her husband. I told her that no problem, and that we will go there to know what actually happened.”
She added that, “Friday morning, we went to the police station, the wife and our mother had gone ahead, the wife now called to tell me that she was told at the station that her husband had fainted and had been rushed to the hospital. I immediately dropped what I was doing and rushed to meet them.”
The deceased’s younger sister added that: “Since he slept in the station and they told us he was in the hospital, we decided to take the medicine with us and when we got to the station, they examined it closely for a long time and they kept dragging their feet and saying a lot of things that we didn’t understand.”
She further said that, “They asked my brother’s wife to write a statement which she did and we went outside and sat. They kept the medicine and a little while, they called my mother and my sister in-law inside an office and they told her that my brother was dead.”
She added that, “I ran out and a policeman caught me and dragged my in the ground like a dog and I had to bite him before he let me go. As I speak with you, my leg is hurting me because of how he dragged me on the ground.”
She said that the family is yet to get any official statement from the Police on how their brother, who was their breadwinner, died saying, “He just got married in December last year, the wicked people did not allow him to enjoy his marriage, now his young wife has been made a widow in her youthful age. Nigerians should come to our aid to get justice for our innocent brother.”
When our correspondent visited the house around 6pm on Friday, family members and several sympathisers were seen weeping and agonizing what they described as act of wickedness by people who are paid to protect lives and properties of innocent citizens.
An eyewitness, Mrs Liatu Nuhu, who sells kunu gyada close to the shop of the deceased said that the police and the vigilante arrived in gestapo style and started arresting people indiscriminately.
Liatu Nuhu said, “I was doing my business when, suddenly, the police and some vigilantes came, more than 10 of them, and started arresting people. The Divisional Police Officer got out of the vehicle and directed them, ‘Arrest him! Arrest him!”
She added that, “And that was how they arrested the boys playing snooker, others who were chatting and the deceased who was standing in front of his shop. We kept telling them not to arrest him, we told them that he was our neighbour here and we knew him to be someone of good character. We asked why they would arrest him, but they still took him away.”
“By 10.15am, when I returned, I saw the deceased’s wife crying profusely. When I asked her what happened, she told me that her husband was dead.”
Another eyewitness, Madam Sheba Babangida who fries akara in the same place said that, “We are doing our business when we suddenly saw policemen dropping from a Hilux van and started arresting youths who were playing snooker game. Uncle (that was how they popularly called him) was inside his kiosk where he sells recharge cards and charge phones.”
Madam Sheba added that, “they just went inside and dragged him out, all of us were shouting that he was not part of the crowd but they refused to listen to us. Their leader was just ordering that everyone must be picked. That was what happened. It was just this morning that I heard that he was dead. It is indeed painful.”
@ Nigerian Tribune