Five days after an 11-year-old girl was crushed to death when an out-of-control vehicle ran into her mother’s shop at Badore along the LASU-Iyana Iba Road in Lagos, another girl, a four-year-old child, has been killed in a similar fashion at Oke-Ira, Ogba area of Lagos on Wednesday.
Around 2pm that day, Saturday PUNCH learnt that the bus, which was overloaded with pupils from the Oke-Ira Primary School lost control and ran into a shop at Irepodun Street, Oke-Ira where the child was sitting, killing her immediately.
When our correspondent visited the scene on Thursday, residents explained that there was no way people who witnessed it could have got the girl out in time.
The girl was rushed to a nearby hospital where she was pronounced dead.
“It was so sudden. The bus itself was very bad and on top of that, it was loaded with pupils again. When the brake failed and we saw the bus coming this way, we all jumped out of its way. It was after it made impact that we remembered that the girl was inside the shop,” a trader in a shop beside the one where the girl was killed, said.
The mother of the girl, whom the other traders identified as Mama Rotimi, reportedly went into shock when she learnt of her daughter’s gruesome death. She is said to be receiving treatment at an undisclosed hospital.
The driver of the vehicle with registration number XH 626 EKY was detained at the Oke Ira police post and later transferred to the Area G Police Command, Ogba.
Meanwhile, when our correspondent visited the family of 11-year-old Mariam Anifowose, who was killed at Badore on December 4, the family explained that as tragic as the death of their girl was, they have accepted it as destiny.
27-year-old Jennifer Gilbert who drove the Toyota Highlander SUV that killed the girl, told the police that she was trying to avoid a trailer driving roughly when she lost control.
The vehicle crossed from one side of the road, through a median and ran into the shop where the girl was sitting with her mother’s merchandise.
The victim’s father, Mr. Ganiyu Anifowose, said he had no intention of holding the woman liable for the death of his daughter.
“I have no reason to pursue a case against her because I believe it was not intentional. It was an accident,”
Anifowose, a commercial bus driver, explained that his daughter chose to stay behind and help her mother at the shop where she sells dry fish but lost her life instead.
“If my wife was in the shop at the time, who knows what could have happened to her too? I had malaria that day and my wife was with me at the time, trying to get me some drugs while my daughter decided to help her mother out in her absence. It has been really painful because Mariam was very precious to me. We had so much in common. Her death was shocking to me and my wife,” he said.