I am sure you have all heard about the FSARS operative who killed a LASTMA official at Iyana Ipaja area of Lagos a few days ago.
Okay, if you have not heard of it, let me give you a heads up: So the story is that FSARS man was too big to and important to be in traffic, so he decided driving in the wrong lane, against traffic, or as we say, one-way.
He was not wearing his uniform or driving a police vehicle, so naturally, the LASTMA guy had to stop and reprimand him… he was only doing his job, mind you.
But what did oga FSARS do? He got angry and I can imagine the normal “do you know who I am?” and “how dare you stop me?” coming from him.
You know how the officers think they are above the law and are quick to ask ‘do you know who I am?’ The conversation must have gotten heated because, according to eyewitnesses, oga FSARS promptly brought out his gun and shot the LASTMA official in the eye, killing him instantly.
Power corrupts, absolute power corrupts absolutely
Everyone remembers when Nigerian youths were protesting the oppressive tendencies of the SARS officers and asking that they should be either disbanded or reformed?
It is on record how this special breed of police officers take laws into their hands and go about oppressing, extorting, maiming and even killing people in Lagos and other parts of the country.
The older generation felt removed from the situation and some even accused the youths of wearing indecent clothes, keeping ‘rough’ hairstyles or living expensive lives, as if those were crimes.
The ones who didn’t criticize the protests kept quiet until the #ENDSARS campaign died down with the government announcing reforms and what-not.
But here we are today: a man doing his job, someone’s daddy, husband, son, uncle, cousin, and friend was just killed because some people think they are above the law.
Let us imagine that this person who was killed had been a young chap of say 24-years-old, carrying a backpack, and going about his business around 10 pm, or a young girl in the same situation.
Nigerians would have said “ehn, but why was he out at that time of the night? Ehn, what is a decent young woman doing outside around10 pm?”
People would have looked for ways to blame the victim and justify the actions of the FSARS officer.
Unfortunately for this operative, the incident happened in broad daylight.
People around saw what happened; those who witnessed the ugly incident said they assumed he was an armed robber (yea, what decent person goes around with a gun?) and they attacked him, beat him till he was half dead before he was rescued by his fellow policemen who whisked him away.
He reportedly died on his way to the hospital.
At this point, some of us will want to say ‘yes! Tit for tat… serves him right,’ but no, no!
It is this mindset, this ‘we thought he was an armed robber’ that led to the lynching of the now famous #ALUU4 and other innocent people.
Jungle justice prevails in this country because our institutions and justice system are too weak.
Things like this must stop.
Anyway, the Lagos State Commissioner of Police, Edgal Imohinmi has said that the FSARS operative would be tried posthumously and dismissed from the force if found guilty.
But if he were alive, if the mob hadn’t killed him, would we have gotten there this fast?
Would he have paid for the consequences of his actions?
And those who killed him, who made them judge and gave them the authority to kill another human being no matter his crime?
With all the institutions in Lagos, things like this are still occurring in 2018.
Lagos, na wa.