An Igbosere High Court in Lagos State yesterday remanded a truck driver, Sodiq Okanlanwan, alongside the truck owner, Wadiu Lekan, over alleged crushing of three persons to death.
The duo were charged on three counts by the Lagos State Government. The state Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice, Mr. Moyosore Onigbanjo (SAN), alleged that the defendants committed the offences on July 26, at 4:00p.m., at Ilasamaja.
Onigbanjo said the defendants unlawfully killed Nnaekpe Chima Victor, Chidinma Ajoku, a FAAN worker and Daniel Okwuoge by running over them with their truck.
The Attorney-General also prayed that the court should remand them in police custody pending when they would be tested for COVID-19 before they could be remanded at the appropriate correctional facility.
Onigbanjo asked for a short adjournment for commencement of trial. However, the defendants pleaded not guilty to the allegations against them.
Delivering judgment, Justice Mobolanle Okikiolu-Ighile ordered that they be remanded for alleged involuntary manslaughter. The judge adjourned the case until Aug. 20 for trial.
Meanwhile, truck drivers in Ogun State yesterday stormed the Ibara Housing Estate office of the Traffic Compliance and Enforcement (TRACE) Corps to protest the death of a colleague.
The truck drivers had alleged that their colleague, a ‘motorboy,’ had fallen off a truck while being chased by operatives of TRACE, and was crushed to death by another vehicle coming behind.
According to them, the TRACE officials were responsible for the death of the ‘motorboy’ and many other unreported casualties.
One of the truck drivers, simply identified as Soji, said: “the TRACE officials stopped the truck; they have earlier mandated a compulsory payment of N100,000 by all trucks in the state. They were chasing the truck for no reason and caused the boy to fall off.”
Reacting, the Ogun TRACE Corps said the deceased ‘motorboy’ was crushed by a fellow truck driver.
Debunking the allegations, TRACE spokesman, Babatunde Akinbiyi, said the truck, which the ‘motorboy’ boarded was arrested for flouting the Federal Government’s 10p.m. to 4a.m. curfew by the task force consisting of the police, TRACE and other agencies.
He accused the truck drivers of kidnapping a TRACE official, saying that was why the vehicle was being chased.