January 26, 2023

Bolanle Raheem’s killing: Car posed no threat — Witness

Bolanle Raheem


By Innocent Anaba

A Police Inspector, Fiyegha Ebimine, yesterday, told a Lagos State High Court, sitting at the Tafawa Balewa Square, TBS, that the car in which Mrs Omobolanle Raheem was allegedly shot and killed by Assistant Superintendent of Police, ASP, Drambi Vandi, on Christmas Day, did not pose any threat to them or the general public.

Ebimine testified at the resumed trial of Vandi in the court.

It will be recalled that Lagos State Government, through its Attorney-General, Mr Moyo Onigbanjo, is prosecuting Vandi for the murder of Omobolanle Raheem.

The charge against the defendants read: “That you, ASP Vandi, on December 25, 2022, at Ajah roundabout, along Lekki-Epe expressway, in the Lagos Judicial Division, unlawfully killed one Omobolanle Raheem (F) by shooting her in the chest.”

Vandi, attached to the Ajiwe Police Station in Ajah, Lagos, is accused of shooting Raheem, while she was returning from an outing with her husband, sister and other family members.

Vandi pleaded not guilty to the charge.

At the resumption of proceedings, yesterday, Vandi’s lawyer, Adetokunbo Odutola, completed his cross-examination of Inspector Ameh, which he began on January 16, 2023.

Upon entering the witness stand, Ebimine was led in evidence by Onigbanjo.

He confirmed Ameh’s testimony that they were in a three-man team, led by Vandi on the day of the shooting.

He also corroborated Ameh’s account of the shooting, saying he also heard the ‘noise’, shortly after the deceased and her husband slowly drove past him and Ameh, in a Toyota Venza.

“One woman was in the passenger seat, a man was driving. I flagged the vehicle down. It didn’t stop. They passed me. I wondered why. He was not speeding. Ameh also flagged him down but he didn’t stop either,” Ebimine said.

According to him, shortly after, he heard “a gunshot from the back. I asked Ameh, ‘What is going on?’”

He told the court that afterwards a crowd gathered and swooped on Vandi, brought him out of a Korope (commercial minibus) where he hid, and put him in the deceased’s car.

“I was trying to find out what was going on. I called Vandi on the phone to find out. I said ‘Oga, what happened?’ He said ‘wait’,” Ebimine said.

He testified that Vandi’s response was the same when he called him some minutes later.

Onigbanjo put some questions to him: “As the Toyota Venza drove past, was there any threat to your life?”

Ebimine: “No, no, no, no.”

Onigbanjo: “As the Venza approached, was there

The witness, who earlier said he was armed, denied firing his weapon.

After Odutola’s cross-examination, he hinted at his intention to visit the scene of the crime, and that he would also like to examine the ballistics report for the weapon and ammunition allegedly used by Vandi.

Justice Harrison advised the lawyer to make a formal application and adjourned till today for the continuation of the trial.