This story is shared with full permission of the narrator, a Twitter user with the handle @Truthfully83. It breaks my heart just a little more to know that this happened ten years ago and it’s gotten worse since then.
“It was a cold morning in Lagos, Thursday 7/1/2010. A day of sad memories. My good Samaritan gesture landed me in police cell.
I was at home watching some football highlights when my phone rang. On checking who the caller was, it was a friend. I picked up to a loud music noise from the background.
“Hi, buddy, what’s up with you?”
I replied, “I’m cool man, where are you at?”
Then my friend replied, “Today is ladies night, we got a full house here in OPTIONS NIGHT CLUB. You are the only one missing. Why?”
Before I could answer, my friend was like, “We are still under the razzmatazz of the new year. Moreover, I am leaving for the UK tomorrow. It will be a singular honour to have you here while sharing drinks with my homies for the very last time.”
I dropped the call, hurried into the bathroom to shower. The time then was 12:25 am. I was able to round off every every before 30 mins. I set off for OPTIONS to join my homies and some babes. I was in a cab along MOBOLAJI BANK ANTHONY WAY IKEJA. I saw this power biker that past my cab with extreme speed, suddenly somersaulted and veered off into the other lane. The rider was strapped to the bike and was physically dragged along the culverts of Police college fence.
I was shocked, and I know that biker needs help. The road was quiet and almost empty. With the street lights fully on. You could see someone from a distance. I told the cabman to stop, that I need to help that dude. I highlighted from the cab in a hurry, crossed over to the opposite direction, then ran to him.
My eyes were heavy, dude was dying, and dying fast. I tried dragging him from the road fully into the sidewalk. He was fully kitted with all power bike safety gadgets. I tapped him to wake up and hold on, that help is on the way. His legs were broken, and he has passed out. Blood everywhere. I signalled the driver of my cab to reverse and come. Just before the driver got there, the young man opened his eyes, held me firmly, and cried (Bros abeg, no let me die…help me. Take my phone call my father) Then he became unconscious.
The driver of the cab arrived at the scene to see a lifeless man with me and his power bike. He ran, without rendering any help. I became confused because the matter is getting somehow complicated. I wasn’t thinking straight anymore. But my goal was to save the young man’s life. Vehicles were passing with top speed, without stopping. I was scared of any eventualities. What if this boy dies? Who will believe my story? What if police patrol comes here now? What will I tell them? Will they believe me? I was confused, but I truly wanted to do my best.
As luck would have it, one empty cab stopped and agreed to convey I and the young man to LASUTH. I abandoned the power bike by the roadside, and carried the young man into the vehicle, with the help of the driver. I was drenched in his blood but Summoned courage to search him. I saw his phone and some money. scrolled through it, and found his dad’s number. So I called.
“Hello, good morning sir.”
“Morning Obafemi,” he replied.
I now told him, “Sir please this is not Obafemi your son. I am just a good Samaritan. Your son had a bike accident, we are on our way to LASUTH, but he is unconscious.”
The man wailed in anguish, but he thanked me and instructed me to stay with his son’s phone. That he and the entire family members are coming from Ikoyi. We got to LASUTH, straight to Accident and Emergency unit. They immediately commenced treatments on him. They pulled those heavy protective gadgets he was putting on, to the gory sight of everyone. His ribs were wide open with blood gushing out. The doctor told me it is critical.
LASUTH asked for a deposit of 25,000 naira. I had 10,000 naira, and I found 8,000 naira on Obafemi. I gave them 18,000 naira, with a promise to go do a withdrawal at Skye Bank ATM Ikeja Plaza. After withdrawing from Skye Bank, I trekked where the power bike was, to roll it back. I singlehandedly rolled the power bike to Area F police station. On getting there, Obafemi’s dad called to inform me that they on their way from Ikoyi. I told him that, I had rolled Obafemi’s power bike to Area F police station to officially complain. He thanked me and hung up.
I reported at the counter, how everything had happened to the police officers on duty; I even took them outside to where the power bike was parked. They asked for my statement, which I willingly wrote down. Yet they wanted to extort me, but I stood my grounds and declined. I told them, this money with me is for the accident victim. That I just withdrew it from Skye Bank ATM for that purpose. They became angry.
One of the officers now asked me, “What is your relationship with that man?”
I told him I am just a good Samaritan. Conspiracy theory now started. They accused me of being a hit and run driver, a murderer that is trying to abandon the victim’s bike, implicate the police, then run away. That my clothes are even drenched in blood, so I am a suspect, and under arrest.
The next thing I heard was, “Writer 2,”
“Go detain that man for cell. And if anybody come tomorrow come report hit and run, na the man be that.”
He left immediately. My brothers and sisters, detention order just like that. I felt bad and almost regretted my kindness. One officer started telling me to bail myself, that cell is not meant for someone like me. That bad guys, armed robbers, cultists and the rest are all inside. That if am willing to part with that 15,000 naira with me, oga can change his mind. He is assuring me of that.
I developed a thick skin, and asked him, “WATIN I DO? WHY ONA NO FOLLOW ME GO HOSPITAL GO CONFIRM? I GO HIT SOMEBODY, RUN, THEN BRING HIM BIKE COME STATION COME REPORT. I am not giving you guys any penny. If I had done bad, let me die here.”
Because I refused to pay, I was asked to undress with only boxer shorts left. They led me into the yard where the detention cell is. My phone and that of Obafemi’s was confiscated. I requested for 200 naira from them as my cell show. The officer looked at me surprisingly. If provoked, I usually develop a thick skin and can withstand any suffering or pain just to prove a point. My University once arrested and detained me because of student activism. I was detained by those rogue policemen in Area F police station.
My fear that night became a reality. I was in the cell when Obafemi dad arrived LASUTH with the entire family. They started calling Obafemi’s number, no one was picking, they called and called and called till the police switch off the phone. They don’t know where exactly Obafemi was. The dad being a wise man, he smelled something fishy. He drove with the entire family to Area F, because I told him I was taken Obafemi’s bike there. Thunder fire whoever wey say money no good. Whoever wey say big man with big status no good.
He came with over ten cars, more than 12 mobile police escorts. The atmosphere was electric. He went to that counter to asked of me. If I had come to report about an accident involving a power bike? The police sensing danger denied. The family became confused, on what happened But as they were about to go embark on a search in LASUTH for Obafemi, his mother sighted his power bike parked at the corner of the station. She called her husband’s attention to it……..
My brothers and sisters, na so everywhere bust.
Where is the good Samaritan? There and then, he called the Commissioner of Police, who called the DPO of Area F. My brothers, see apologies….it was a mix-up, a little mix-up. DPO came by himself to release me from cell. With begging upon begging. At that moment, I broke down in tears. I regretted. I was released from police cell, so we all left for LASUTH.
I thank those doctors and nurses on duty that night, at the Accident and Emergency unit. God will continue to bless them. They never abandoned Obafemi, despite not seeing the balance or me. They continued and revived him But he was on oxygen and some sort of life support machine. But he was responding to treatment as we arrived. On seeing Obafemi’s condition and his injuries, the entire family busted into tears…from the mother to his sisters, they were all crying profusely.
The dad na man.. omo money good oooo…..
The father started wailing, “How can I lose my only son? I have told this boy, that Nigerian roads are not the same thing as the UK. That he should only ride his power bike in the UK. We have too many careless drivers in Nigeria.”
“There and then, he started calls upon calls. From a private surgeon in Nigeria to a private hospital in the UK. From private jet in Nigeria to arrangement and paperwork. All in one place. Within 1 hour, private Ambulance with all the life-saving machines arrived LASUTH. Finally, Obafemi was airlifted to the UK with private surgeons accompanying him and his entire family. He was treated, and he survived. His father permanently relocated all his children to the UK because of that incident.
IF not for God, I would have stopped doing good. What’s the essence of humans without humanity? Obafemi’s dad years later helped me secured a foreign scholarship fully paid for.”