Amos Odeyemi, a cocoa trader in Osun State, has narrated how he was shot by a police officer in 2003 over a N20 bribe.
Mr Odeyemi, who was deformed following the attack, explained to the Osun State judicial panel of inquiry handling cases of violations of human rights on Saturday, that the shot destroyed his lower lip, jaw, and teeth.
Explaining his travails, he told the panel that the incident occurred when he was going to Offa, Kwara State from Modakeke on July 22, 2003.
He said the police constable, Olalere George (with Force No. 367218 PC), shot him over “N20 customary toll fee”.
“At the Railway Crossing, Okuku, a Police Patrol team mounted a checkpoint where the bus driver was stopped, the bus was searched, and the driver paid them the N20 bribe,” the man said.
“As the bus moved, another police officer fired gunshots at the bus and wounded seven out of the 18 passengers inside the bus, including me. The gun hit my head from the back and came out through mouth and in the process, scattered my mouth, lips, teeth and jaw with blood gushing out from my body”, he said in his petition.
Mr Odeyemi told the panel that he fell into coma while the police officers ran away from the scene of the crime.
“Good Samaritans rushed me to the Ladoke Akintola University of Technology, Teaching Hospital (LAUTECH) Osogbo where I was treated. Due to my critical conditions, I was later referred to Obafemi Awolowo University, (OAUTHC) Ile Ife where I underwent surgeries and other medical treatments to remove the bullets.
“The Police Authorities have not disciplined Constable George, members of his team and Divisional Police Officer who gave them weapons to use against innocent members of the Public at the said checkpoint,” he said.
Mr Odeyemi also said the incident can no longer make him live a normal life, continue with his business, eat any solid food, talk well, control his saliva, appear in public without using a towel to cover his mouth.
He said: ”I have been disfigured permanently and now look like a monster whose appearance frightens most people and drives away people from me.”
“When I walk during the day, blood and saliva will be gushing out uncontrollable from my mouth. I was only 45 years old when the incident happened but I am now 62 years old.
He sought redress for the brutality he suffered from the members of the Nigeria Police Force, Osun State Command.
The chairperson of the panel, Akin Oladimeji, a retired judge, adjourned the case till Friday, November 27.
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