Driver knocks man down while distracted by phone call

A company driver, Henry Uduze has allegedly killed a 37-year-old man, Effiong Etim, The Punch reports.

Effiong, a security guard was returning from work on his motorcycle when he was allegedly crushed to death by Uduze on Omole Estate Phase II.

According to eyewitnesses the suspect was receiving a telephone call when the incident happened.

The deceased gave up the ghost at the Accident and Emergency Centre at the tollgate area, Ikeja.

A resident, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said the driver attempted to flee the scene.

He said, “The company driver was coming out of a bank when he was distracted by the call he was receiving. He crushed Effiong and hit another motorcyclist. The back tyre climbed Effiong’s head, but the second victim survived.

“The driver wanted to run away, but the security man at the bank held him. The case was reported at the Isheri Police Station.”

The victim’s wife, Dorothy, a housemaid, said she was at her workplace when she was called that her husband had been taken to a hospital by men of the Federal Road Safety Corps and the police.

She said, “His head was bandaged. His private parts were connected to a pipe. He could not open his eyes or talk. He was writhing in pain on the bed. After a brief moment, a nurse sent me out.”

The mother of seven children said that the family was given a referral to the Gbagada and Lagos Island general hospitals, adding that the two hospitals said they didn’t have a bed space.

Dorothy said the family was able to secure a bed space at the Lagos State University Teaching Hospital, Ikeja, and they were asked to pay N50,000 for the treatment and drugs the victim got at the emergency centre.

She said, “One of the boys of the man that hit my husband said they could only afford N30,000. When I rejected the money, the policeman who accompanied us said if I didn’t take it, they would leave me to bear the burden alone. Since I was helpless, I had to take it and I added the remaining money.

“When it was evening, a nurse at the centre said she didn’t want to break the news to me directly, but since I had refused to go home, she had no choice. She said my husband was dead.”

Effiong’s corpse was deposited in a mortuary, while the victim’s wife was taken to the Isheri Police Station to make her statement.

Dorothy said the lawyer of the suspect’s lawyer offered N30,000 as payment for her husband’s mortuary bill, adding that the lawyer said her family would be compensated “based on our worth.”

“My church got a lawyer for us and after the lawyer spoke with them, they promised to give us N250,000. But what will I do with that? All I want is for them to bury my husband and help my children. I want them to give my children scholarships,” she added.

The victim’s family’s lawyer, Mrs. Nike Olawepo, said efforts to see representatives of the suspect’s company had been abortive.

She said, “The suspect hit the victim with his company’s vehicle. All efforts to see the company’s representative have proved abortive; they seemed not to be bothered at all. A lawyer, who claimed to be representing the company, said the company can only assist in burying the deceased with N250, 000 and that after the burial, the company will profile Etim’s family before it could think of what to do about the case.

“The deceased, who was from Akwa-Ibom, was the breadwinner of his family of eight and also has aged parents in the village. The family is staying in a single room at Olowora and they are indigent. If this case is not properly managed and investigated, the family of the deceased will suffer double jeopardy.”

The Police Public Relations Officer, SP Dolapo Badmos, is yet to speak on the matter

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