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TV Presenter Elma Godwin was “Assaulted by a Lagos Policeman” in Victoria Island Yesterday – Read her Account

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Elma Godwin

Elma Godwin

On our way home on Friday morning at about 12:45am from supporting DJ Obi at his 10-day attempt to beat world record with two of my friends, we stopped to get Sharwama at Maroccaine Restaurant (a popular 24-hr restaurant in Victoria Island). On our way out, we approached a police stop with three fully armed police officers at Ligali Ayorinde and turned on our inner lights and my friend driving wound down so they can see we were all harmless girls. Immediately he started accusing her of holding something in her hand, aggressively questioning “what is in your hand?!”. She shows him her empty hands and he goes on to say that he must search the boot and demands we come out of the car. I came out of the car to check this boot with him, he inspected, found nothing and before I closed the boot he quickly walked towards the passenger’s door I had left opened and grabbed my friend’s bag.

She asked him severally to return the bag, and we all started saying “give us the bag!” and then he began to rain insults on us, yelling “What’s in this bag? There is an ‘exhibit’ in this bag! I must search this bag!” while continuously flashing his flash light directly in our eyes like we were criminals. This did not even allow us to see his name or his badge so we know how to address him. Bear in mind we were just 3 girls and officer 2 & 3 stood there doing nothing like they were waiting for other cars to harass. So I picked up my phone to call for help and before I knew it, he forcefully snatched my phone from hand leaving us in shock, fear and we frantically started shouting “give us our phone and bag back!” and even trying to get the attention of the few passerbys incase anyone could help. Insults fly as things get heated up, he threatens us multiple times that he will use his belt on us and then I managed to grab my friend’s bag, but my phone remained in his possession.

He started insulting my parents, “God punish your mother and father! Your father is an idiot!”. He called us stupid, indisciplined etc. repeating himself “Am I your mate?”. I scream “you are holding my property! Give me my phone! This is stealing! The police are stealing!” and that was when he released his grip of my phone and I started walking back to the car. He chased me and started pushing me and slammed my body against the car. Thank God my door was still open I jumped in, locked the door and my friend zoomed off.

Elma Godwin 1 Elma Godwin 2

As we drove off I felt a sharp pain, realised I was bleeding on my right hand and three of my nails had been broken. How can a police officer assault me like this? This is gross misuse of power and brutality.

We called Police Control, Rapid Response Service (RRS) and the emergency switchboard (112) who forwarded my number to another unit. They weren’t helpful at all, instead asked us what we expect them to do and were frankly not concerned. Someone from RRS advised I go home and call back at 7am. The emergency switch board told me they would forward my details and we should expect a call back… Till now, no call back.

This has opened my eyes to the fact that WE ARE NOT SAFE IN NIGERIA!!!

THERE IS NOTHING LIKE EMERGENCY RESPONSE.

Think about it… If I were being brutally raped, robbed or attacked and I called our so called ’emergency service’, nobody would show up. It’s a sobering thought to think that;

The ones who should be protecting you are the ones to really be afraid of
If something horrible happens, there’s no calvary, there’s no red and blue sirens coming to your aid… YOU’RE ON YOUR OWN!

34 Comments

  1. Stephanie

    June 25, 2016 at 8:49 am

    ambode will come and dramatize for us now. This time nextweek they’ll be right back at it. I am so sorry for my future in this country. But this is not government, this is Nigerians.

    • Bola

      June 25, 2016 at 12:08 pm

      Why are Nigerian youths so ignorant? Is the
      State in charge of police? Nigerian Police is undertheFederalGovernment o. Nigerian police has always been useless no matter the President. This is one agency that’s so repulsive , it’s honestly hard to ever feel sorry for our security forces when thy finally face armed men and run like the cowards they are

  2. Victor Adegoke

    June 25, 2016 at 8:53 am

    What kind of Country is this in this Buhari era? Only God will save us.

    • Sansarai

      June 25, 2016 at 11:27 am

      Nawa for people o. Police assault – blame it on Buhari. Person dies – blame it on Buhari. Mutant moths eat all Nigeria’s tomato crop – blame it on Buhari. This your comment is senseless. Are you implying that this kind of unruly Police were alien to us before Buhari came into power?

    • Naijatalk

      June 25, 2016 at 12:51 pm

      Oh oh you guys are sensitive now. During Jonathan’s time, everything evil in Nigeria was Jonathan. Please stop being sensitive for Buhari. That’s how the game goes. Uneasy lies the head that wears the crown.

    • Bola

      June 25, 2016 at 12:11 pm

      So of you have nothing your heads but the default of Buhari. Have the police been good under any President? The police is made up of Nigerians , we need to address the fact that once Nigeians have a little power they will most likely abuse it. The police force has always been a disgrace to this nation. They are only a little better than armed robbers

  3. lacey

    June 25, 2016 at 9:03 am

    My dear Nigerian police are armed robbers! It was after the bad experience I had with the police at the Lekki phase 1 toll, that made me decide to move out of that Country! I cannot even give the whole story but I understood clearly from that night after a guy just left his lane and moved into my lane without any signing, and I slightly brushed his car! The treatment I got that night made me realize that most of the missing persons in Lagos are most times the police and other accomplices! Never drive alone at night as a woman or group of women! Make sure you have a guy and move with guys!The heart of Nigerian police is desperately wicked! It is was a very bad experience that I want to forget, as some of them can even throw marijuana or even a bullet in your car to set you up,especially when you try to prove your right! It is well!

    • Just Saying

      June 25, 2016 at 12:27 pm

      Here we go again Kenya Moore wanna be. Miss America or is it Miss USA. There is crime everywhere in the world. You just pray not to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. Where you ran to is there no crime there?. Just fracking tired of you banana boat refugee abroad lot.

    • Naijatalk

      June 25, 2016 at 12:54 pm

      You are so incredibly stupid for this comment. It is unbelievable the magnitude of stupidity in one person.

    • lacey

      June 25, 2016 at 11:49 pm

      My [email protected] just saying were I live in the US,I leave my door open at night,most times I leave the door open for domestic cleaners to come in while I am at work with tablets and gadgets littered every where and trust me , the Mexicans will do their cleaning thoroughly and go! they live well and work hard,not Nigerians domestic staff that will clear your house! there is crime every where,but the police is supposed to protect citizens,not brutalize them! I pray you don’t ever experience Nigerian police brutality!

  4. bruno

    June 25, 2016 at 9:23 am

    ” “Am I your mate?”.

    the favourite line of every nigerian. any small thing, IM I YOUR MATE, DONT TRY ME, I WILL DEAL WITH YOU.

  5. Fifi

    June 25, 2016 at 9:58 am

    I wish she got his name so we can drag him out,those roadside police are demons, drunkards and drug heads, one called bamidele tried me at falomo roundabout some years ago,i made sure he regretted his life, shameless beings

  6. hezekina pollutina

    June 25, 2016 at 10:12 am

    well, yes. na wild wild west.

  7. osa

    June 25, 2016 at 10:16 am

    Its a deeply rooted problem.
    The average police man in Nigeria is uneducated and unrefined moreso. So the sight of someone in a much better stead ‘class -wise’ irks them to great lengths.
    This harrassment was baseless and totally uncalled for. ITS so painful that the girls werent able to get the name of this so-called officer.

    Why do policemen get along with low lifes and rumoured criminals? Big question. I hate police ehhn. . .

  8. Mr. P

    June 25, 2016 at 10:43 am

    Elma! What you can do in the absence of a name, is focus on other information. Date Time, and location. Then publicize this information. I’m sure you know how to do that. Get his superiors attention and they will know who was manning that spot on that night. It’s not 100% but it may give results. Name and shame!! Good luck

  9. been a while

    June 25, 2016 at 10:47 am

    hi guys, I have not been to Nigeria in quite some time, so I am a little bit out of touch. I have a few questions:

    1) Do Police people now stay on the road stopping cars that are just driving on the road? What do they look for? Do people have to open their bag for them to check inside?

    2) Do pedestrians get stopped by Police to have their bags checked? What if the pedestrian refuses to open their bag to get checked… what will happen?

    3) What of if I have something important to me – eg an important document and they decide to seize it…. what happens?

    I am worried o, as this sounds absurd. Can someone please educate me on how things are now working with regards to Police in Nigeria and these random searches

  10. Paul Adeyemo

    June 25, 2016 at 10:55 am

    Inasmuch as I sympathise with you greatly I will still say our society is rotten. The police officers we have is a reflection of our society. People are just wicked from the MDs in companies harrasing women to lecturers failing female students because of sex. Just check women assaulting their maids we read everywhere. The society is rotten. We need a complete overhaul of our orientation and moral values. I beg you, don’t try what you did with the police again, they could have shot you, those guys are fustrated and mentally unstable

  11. Rikirom

    June 25, 2016 at 11:31 am

    Wow dis is terrible something has to be done fast about this complain cause is getting too much

  12. Nancy

    June 25, 2016 at 11:32 am

    The police is never your friend world wide especially when the colour of your skin is black.

    well maybe in America they should have told you to put your hands on your head for yelling at a police man. Well as for me ooooo Nigeria or America – The police is never your friend .

  13. Busarni

    June 25, 2016 at 11:50 am

    That is Nigeria for you; you are 100% responsible for your being alive. We are all at fault ; yes we forgot too easily. This too will pass and everybody goes on with their lives.
    How about yunusa? The moron that abducted ese Oruru; nobody is asking again. Probably he must have been released and going about his normal life. Tomorrow he will abduct another teenage girl after all, nothing will happen to him.
    How about the woman that was killed in Kano state? What has happened to those arrested in connection with the gruesome murder? In as much as it doesn’t affect us ; we don’t bother asking. @obyezeks promised seeing the matter to a positive end; she has suddenly gone on awol.
    Perhaps, they have been released and tomorrow they will kill another woman, man, boy or girl in the name of religion.
    The media is not helping out; as far as I am concerned their fundamental obligation is to bring facts to their readers/viewers. It is no brainier that investigative journalism is dead in Nigeria. If I say I am despondent concerning our attitude ; it will be an understatement .
    Police brutality will keep on happening ; look the other way today ; tomorrow it can be you.
    Enough ranting abeg forgive my typo; emotions got the better part of me joor .

  14. Random

    June 25, 2016 at 12:35 pm

    I read today in punch newspaper that a police officer is paid 20 thousand naira and an inspector 50 thousand. No excuse for brutality but they have to be paid better. Me nor go risk my life for anything talk less for peanuts.

  15. mrs C nwayioma,lol.

    June 25, 2016 at 1:25 pm

    Avoid the Nigerian police at all costs. As a lawyer, if I start giving you their gist, you will be astonished. My cousin was kidnapped with police guns. Those people are just a step above armed robbers and they are fond of killing people and dumping their bodies. I wonder when a change will truly come to that organization.

    • Somborri

      June 25, 2016 at 9:28 pm

      “a step above armed robbers”???? You mean armed robbers in uniform! I’m also a lawyer and not ashamed to say that I quit my last job because I just could not deal with police brutality. It always took me about a week to recover from a visit to a police station. The stark reality that a human life is worth absolutely NOTHING to these uniformed and armed crazies was just too much to bear.

      That said, there are always exceptions to every rule and I can say that I met some of them. It will be totally unfair to just say the negatives when I’ve experienced the some positives. A big shout out to the team of police men who helped control traffic and change my tyre on the day I had a nasty blow out on Lekki-Epe expressway. They were calm and patient and didnt ask for a dime.

  16. Just

    June 25, 2016 at 1:28 pm

    The problem is not the country but the people.We need to change our orientation and mind sets its not helping at all.

  17. Prince

    June 25, 2016 at 2:39 pm

    We all know that Nigeria Police is full of mad dogs like Fayose. Those guys must have taken some crazy kain-kain

  18. Miss depressed and confusef

    June 25, 2016 at 6:07 pm

    I really need sincere advise and I don’t know what BN address is to send my story to or I would’ve.
    Precisely a month ago, I was doing my routine at my job, on my way to the bank at around 10am I was attacked by armed men who made away with the cash I was going to deposit.
    It was only the driver and I in the company car. Thankfully, We were still close to my company premises that everything was captured by the CCTV.
    I called my mgr and reported everything and hr called the police, and we (driver & I), were told to go with d police to give account of everything.
    On getting there, the police took our clothes and locked us in cells. At around 1am they brought us out and tortured us. I can’t even begin to explain in details what these 3 men did to me, a 25yr old defenseless female. My company did not even inform my relatives or anybody from home. I would’ve died that night and none of my loved ones would’ve known.

    Very long story short, my church guy who happened to see me in the cell, contacted my sisters and they came with lawyers and the police let me go after we paid N80k.
    I spent over 3weeks in the hospital after this, and the only thing my MD called to tell me is “sorry, when are you resuming”.

    I feel hurt and let down by my coy. They got their money back through insurance and only my colleague I run shift with came to see me once.
    My famistory mad and want to press charges cos they blame the mgt for not providing security for someone carrying a huge sum of cash all the way to d bank alone, thereby putting me in harms way.

    My lawyer has advised that I can sue the police department, but at risk of being framed by the currupt naija system.

    As for me, I’m jobless now and presently incapable of using my left hand. I just want to be healed complete and not think about what to do next.

    Please BN, publish my story. You can reach me to show you the pictures of my battered body taken immediately I left the police station and for names and location if needed.

    PS I’m an an avid reader and follower.
    Thanks

  19. concerned9a

    June 25, 2016 at 7:54 pm

    Armed Robbers in uniform..can never be trusted..just needed settling as per back hander that’s all they live for..

  20. Ola

    June 27, 2016 at 6:56 pm

    I can say for a fact that the emergency response works. I witnessed a robbery (though from a distance at one of my neighbors’ house and called 112. The emergency responders (police) were there in less than 10 mins. Though the robbers had gone before they arrived but less than 10 mins in my opinion is a good response time considering where we’re coming from. I believe it can only improve.

    • LasemaSocial

      June 28, 2016 at 1:36 pm

      Thank you, we are continually working with all the agencies to reduce response times.

  21. Jane

    June 27, 2016 at 6:59 pm

    Elma sorry o…. This our police sef….. Make God deliver us.
    But for the Emergency Response part, they actually work o…. Cos last week when my sister went into labour and our car for some weird reasons refused to start, I decided to try the Emergency Response switchboard (112) for the first time. I called and told the operator my sister was in labour and we needed an ambulance. In less than 30mins, the ambulance arrived and took us to the hospital.
    I think that the reason they didn’t answer her properly was because she was making a complaint not calling in with an emergency. I’m just saying sha

    • LasemaSocial

      June 28, 2016 at 1:35 pm

      Thank you. We are happy that your sister had a safe delivery. Congrats to your whole family!

  22. LasemaSocial

    June 28, 2016 at 1:34 pm

    Feedback from the call centre:
    Ms Godwin’s call was received at 3:30am on Friday 24th June 2016 and it was escalated to RRS immediately.

    Discussion with the RRS team on duty today revealed that the call was escalated to a Victor of RRS who was on duty that morning.

    The complaint was further escalated by Victor to the local police station closest to the scene. The Local Police called the victim and asked her to come complain at the station in the morning as the event had already taken place.

    We have tried to call her line but we couldn’t reach her, the number has been forwarded to the local police station to follow up and invite her for a chat

    We will always do our best to escalate calls to the relevant agencies who will then follow their own chains of command to respond.
    We regret that Ms Godwin had to go through such an ordeal.
    You can follow us on all social media @lasemasocial
    Thank you so much.

  23. Faakay

    August 27, 2018 at 6:58 pm

    There’s emergency but it was too late

  24. Faakay

    September 29, 2018 at 7:39 pm

    You’ve to be careful next time : sorry about the pain

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