DELSU student narrates how policemen robbed him of his school fees at gunpoint

The N150,000 forcefully collected from the victim was meant for his school fees and feeding.

Nigerian police officers have been notorious in the past for extorting innocent Nigerians (image used for illustrative purpose) [TheCable]

Ifie said he was travelling along Sapele-Warri Road when the armed policemen at a checkpoint stopped the bus he was travelling in and compelled him to cough out N150,000 meant for his school fees and feeding.

The policemen, according to Punch, flagged down the bus and asked him to disembark for inspection.

It was gathered that after the policemen checked Ifie's bag without finding anything incriminating, one of them collected his phone.

While he was checking it, he saw two Gmail accounts,” he said. “One is my personal email addresses bearing my name while the other carries the name of my dance crew.

During the interrogation, the 22-year-old said one of the policemen started calling him a fraudster for operating two email addresses.

I told him I am not a fraudster and was trying to explain to him that the second email is for my crew. He called his colleague to take me into their vehicle far from where the bus I was travelling in was and they handcuffed me. They told the driver to leave me. I told them I am a student and that I was going to school," he recalled.

Ifie said he repeatedly pleaded with the officers to allow him call his parents but they declined, adding that they asked him to 'settle my case'.

He added, “I asked them what they meant by that. One of them asked to know my tribe and I told him I am Urhobo. He said Urhobos are thieves. They said my settlement fee was N200,000. I screamed and asked them where they wanted me to get that amount.

“I asked them again to give me my phone so I could call my parents. They said I should settle them at that spot or they would take me to their station. They were there for over an hour, intimidating me. Their names were not on their badge.”

The DELSU student added that the policemen eventually took him to the station, Ekpan Police Division, around 2 pm and threatened to lock him up if he failed to settle them.

Ifie stated, “Meanwhile, I have the credit alert of my school fees and feeding money in my phone. They threatened to put me in a cell where other boys like me have been for over two weeks. They said they would thereafter take me to the EFCC. I begged them to let me call my parents but they did not answer me.

“They asked me if I have money in my account and I told them I didn’t. They started searching my phone and saw the alert. They said they must collect N200,000. I begged and told them it’s my school fees. They took me to an ATM point but it did not work. They then took me to a POS stand around the station and forced me to withdraw N150,000 from my account for them. My school fees was about N80,000 while the remaining money was for my welfare. The payment for school fees is closing next month.”

After forcing him to withdraw N150,000 for them, Ifie stated that the policemen took him back to the station where he was given back his bag and freed.

Commenting on the matter, the state police spokesperson, DSP Onome Onovwakpoyeya, said there's nothing much the police can do.

Onovwakpoyeya said the police team in question could not have been from Ekpan Division, as the spot where Ifie was picked was not under the division’s jurisdiction.

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