The driver of a sachet water producing factory, Ademola Awe, has allegedly crushed three siblings and a motorcyclist to death on Ekundayo Street in the Epe Local Government Area of Lagos State.
The victims were identified as Esther Orimisan, 24; Kofoworola Orimisan, 17; two-year-old Emmanuel Orimisan; and the motorcyclist, Femi Shojedo.
PUNCH Metro gathered that Awe, who was driving a Ford pick-up van with number plate GGE 42 XN around 11pm on Saturday allegedly under the influence of alcohol, had hit another vehicle on his way, but while attempting to escape from the scene, he allegedly drove without the vehicle’s headlights in order to avoid being apprehended.
But tragedy struck when he drove into Ekundayo Street, as Shojedo, who was conveying the siblings to their home on Mosalasi Street, had a head-on collision with Awe’s van at the junction leading into the street.
An eyewitness, Bode Abisoye, said the victims were not aware that the van was coming towards their direction, adding that the tragedy would have been averted if Awe had switched on the headlights of the van.
He stated that Awe attempted to flee from the scene of the accident, but residents gave him a chase until he drove the van into a gutter.
Abisoye said, “He (Awe) scratched a car and was trying to escape, because of the cost of repairing it; in the process, he switched off the truck’s headlights and as he made to enter Ekundayo Street, he rammed into the motorcyclist and the three passengers he was carrying in front of the Model Hospital. We were telling him to come down to rescue the victims but he refused.
“We had to chase him till he drove into a gutter, but we noticed that he was drunk when we approached him. He even refused to alight from the vehicle and if not for the involvement of the police and the neighbourhood security men, he would have escaped.
“Aside from the motorcyclist, the three passengers were siblings, two girls and a two-year-old boy. All the victims were still alive when the accident happened, but they later died at the Epe General Hospital due to the severity of the injuries they sustained.”
A close relative of the siblings, who identified himself simply as Ayo, said they were on their way home when the accident occurred, adding that their mother had been informed of the development.
He said, “The motorcyclist usually conveyed them home every night, so on the day of the accident, he went to pick them from their mother’s shop located on Omojole Street. The motorcyclist was about to come onto Ekundayo Street when the driver used the van to kill them. The siblings were close to getting to their house on Mosalasi Street when the accident happened.
“I wonder why he (Awe) would drive at such a late hour without the headlights on; if the headlights were on, the motorcyclist would have seen the vehicle and the accident would have been prevented. The driver works for a sachet water company, and from what I gathered, he has been arrested and is being detained at the Epe Police Station.”
When contacted, the state Police Public Relations Officer, Bala Elkana, said one Shakiru Ajayi informed the police of the accident, adding that Awe had been arrested and the corpses of the victims deposited in the Epe General Hospital mortuary for autopsy.
Elkana stated, “On Saturday, June 6, 2019, around 11.30pm, one Shakiru Ajayi came to the station and reported that a fatal vehicle and motorcycle accident occurred on Ekundayo Street, Epe. The accident involved a Ford pick-up van with number plate GGE 42 XN, driven by one Ademola Awe, and a Bajaj motorcycle with number plate LSR 99 OG, being operated by one Femi Shojedo.
“The motorcyclist was conveying three passengers of the same family and all of them sustained serious injuries and were rushed to the Epe General Hospital for treatment, where Shojedo and the siblings, Esther Orimisan, 24; Kofoworola Orimisan, 17; and Emmanuel Orimisan, two, died. The corpses were deposited in the hospital’s mortuary for autopsy. We have the driver of the pick-up van in our custody.”