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Thursday, 12 March 2015

Reporters' Diary! Eye-Ball-To-Eye-Ball With Gun Totting Lekki Robbers

I give God the glory for the rare privilege of being able to tell this story, it was indeed a one in a million kind of armed robbery operation-the much talked about robbery incident of today, Thursday, March 12th, 2015 at the Waterfront Plaza branch of the First City Monument Bank on Admiralty Way, Lekki, Lagos that left 4 policemen, an innocent 14years old fish-hawker dead and about 5 others injured from stray bullet wounds.

I have read stories of day light robbery incident but never thought it could be this weighty, for me and one of my staff that witnessed it live, it was a case of close shave with death. We thank God for making His GRACE sufficient for us on this fateful day. It was like one of those Nollywood's unrealistic movies that normally takes off like a joke.

We still can't come out of the shock that, the operation which was sadly successful was led by a woman, yes a woman, very agile and daring. We were on our way from the studio of Mattson Photography who we had agreed to work together on the next MissGlobalNigeria project. The celebrity photographer and I met through my friend, Barrister Festus Keyamo on Tuesday, March 10th, 2015 while we were having lunch on Awolowo Road, Ikoyi.

Shortly after we left Mattson's Studio, we saw one of our colleagues, OlaMohammed of Islanders Magazine, we had a brief chat and proceeded on our journey. In a minute or thereabout to the journey, we began to hear a reverberated sound of gun shots, though we never believed it could be gun shots anyway owing to the fact that, it was a broad day light.

The gun shots persisted and the long queue of vehicles further confused us on what could be happening, in a jiffy, a couple of thoughts came to mind: could they be political thugs trying to harass rival party or are these bad boys trying to abduct someone?

At a point, just in the spate of maybe 10 to 20 seconds, the journalistic instincts in me asked me to open the door; "who knows I could have access to some exclusives." Alas! It was an eye ball to eye ball with a daring gun wielding lanky man on full mobile police uniform who had obviously taken possession of the area with his other gangs. That time, the deafening sound of the gun shots got me numbed leaving me to take a decision between saying my last prayers or scamper for safety.

In a flicker, I resorted to laying with my face down but I had a premonition he will pull the trigger and blast my skull, so I decided to take to crawling but very fast as if it were an ordered punishment. I fell into the ditch and did a few more crawl before I remembered the fate of the person in the car with me, Faith,  then I started to say prayers.

Miraculously, the GRACE covered her, she witnessed all the sporadic shootings, how the innocent 14years old girl was wasted whilst scampering for safety, the torrents of bullets that penetrated the police escorts vehicle and killed 4 of the 5 policemen inside and how the armed bandits eventually escaped via an expanse of land behind the bank with a speed boat.

We give God the glory. This is one time one regrets being a Nigerian, just while the innocent poor masses are praying for smooth transition of the tension-soaked political process, the thoughts of daylight safety is next on agenda. May the spirits of our forefathers deliver us.

Tunde Moshood is the editor of NationalEnquirer.

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