Thursday, 21 February 2013

This Woman Lost Her Pregnancy in the Hands of Lagos State KAI Officials

A pregnant woman, Nkechi Omakagu, has accused men of the Lagos State Kick Against Indiscipline of being responsible for the loss of her six-month-old pregnancy. Nkechi said she lost her pregnancy during many hours of grueling experience in KAI’s detention camp.

She said her ordeal began when she was being rushed to a hospital in Gbagada, Lagos, during one of the recent environmental sanitation in the state.

Nkechi told Punch that herself and a neighbour driver were accosted by KAI men, who insisted that they would detain them and be made to pay fines before they would be released.

Narrating her ordeal, she said: “Early in the morning of January 26, 2012, I was feeling pains in my stomach but because it was midnight and the pain was not constant, I tried to endure it. When it was 7am, my husband suggested that we go to a hospital because it had become intense. He begged our neighbour, Emeka Ozor, to take me to a hospital in Gbagada.

“When we got to Obanikoro, a team of KAI officials accosted us and told us that we had no excuse for being out on sanitation day before 10am. One of the KAI men forced Ozor out of the driver’s seat and drove us to their office.”

She said on getting to the office, the vehicle was handed over to a woman in mufti whom the KAI men referred to as Alhaja. Nkechi said she pleaded with Alhaja to allow her go for treatment but the woman did not agree, saying that there was no excuse for contravening the state’s laws.

“While in serious pain, I pleaded with Alhaja to let me go for treatment considering my condition but she refused. I even tried to appeal to her feminine side since she ought to know what pregnancy pains feels like but all my entreaties fell on deaf ears”, she said.

Nkechi said while she was pleading, another KAI official, identified only as Emperor, told Alhaja that the amount of money that would be paid as bail was N10,000.

She added that Alhaja said, mockingly, that she could give birth to a baby in the compound.

Nkechi said when she could not produce the money, the KAI men took her and Ozor, along with the vehicle to the premises of the Magistrate’s Court in Ikoyi, where the KAI men demanded N50,000.

She said at that point, the pain had become constant and more intense, adding that she began to have premature contractions. 

She said she was released eight hours after her arrest and after parting with N5,000. “I was released at 3pm, about eight hours after I was arrested. The KAI men still held on to the vehicle, so my husband had to get a taxi which took us down to the hospital. The KAI men collected N5,000 and did not issue us a receipt,” she said.

She said on getting to the hospital, the doctor confirmed that her pregnancy had been threatened as a result of ‘serious stress and strain’ which she had gone through. The doctor prescribed some drugs for her and confined her to bed rest.

But unfortunately, “On January 27 (the next day), I was diagnosed with premature contractions and was later informed that the foetus was dead,” she said. gathered that Nkechi has been crying as the KAI men have made her lose her first child because of bribe money. A copy of the medical report made available to Punch said the foetus died of ‘Cardio-pulmonary failure and prematurity’.

Meanwhile, the vehicle, a Mitsubishi Bus with number plate, BT292EPE, is still in custody of KAI.

Governor Babatunde Fashola, please call your men to order in Lagos...this is too bad!

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