A resident of Abuja has narrated how a Bolt driver simply identified as Yakubu connived with four unidentified police officers to kidnap and rob him of a million naira.
The man, who asked not to be named, ordered a Bolt ride on March 25. After cancelling two rides, Bolt assigned a driver to him. At some point, a mini van conveying four police officers obstructed the ride, kidnapped and robbed him.
“I ordered a ride but cancelled twice because the first two drivers didn’t move,” he told FIJ. “After a few minutes, Bolt assigned another driver to pick me up. About two minutes later, Yakubu, the driver, arrived in a Toyota Corolla with plate number FKJ500BL.”
“As I walked to the car, I noticed a man staring at me from a black mini van which slowed down at the traffic light even though the light was green.”
FIJ tracked the number plate on the Federal Road Safety Corps’ (FRSC) National Vehicle Identification System and found that it was valid and assigned to a black Toyota Corolla.
Before the journey, he noticed he was being monitored but did not think much of it. Some minutes into the journey, the officers obstructed the ride and operated like armed robbers.
“The driver took an alternate route because there was traffic on the route Bolt mapped out for him. I saw the same black minivan behind the car and surprisingly, the van sped up to obstruct the car,” he said.
“Two men came out of the vehicle, pointing their guns at us. I told the driver to quickly do something but he didn’t.
“In fear, I gave my phone to the driver to keep and say he owned it if they asked him. The officers instructed me to come out of the car, while pointing guns at me.
“They sat me in the back of their van and asked for my phone. I told them I didn’t have it. Immediately, one of them slapped me and accused me of being a fraudster.
“They paid the bolt driver, he gave them my phone and the food I bought and left.”
He also said the officers drove him to an unknown location, where they forced him to transfer one million naira to them, using the First Bank account of one Igbokwe Onyinyechi.
“After going through my phone, crypto wallet and bank app, they took me to a Point of Sales (POS) stand out of town. They forced me to send all my money to a First Bank account belonging to one Igbokwe Rita Onyinyechi,” he said.
“After they confirmed the money, they drove me far from the location and dropped me off at the express road.”
He also told FIJ that the officers said they had been monitoring him for a while. “They said things about how they had been tracking me and how they got my information from someone they arrested some months back.”
When FIJ contacted Josephine Adeh, Police Public Relations Officer, Abuja command, she said she would investigate the matter.
Speaking with our reporter, a representative of Bolt stated that the driver was also a victim of the officers and did not collude with them as implied by the passenger.
“The driver did not collude with the police on the rider’s arrest,” the representative said. “As you are aware, it is quite suspicious and indicative of the commission of an offence when an individual attempts to evade the police. Furthermore, it is critical to understand that drivers are obligated to abide by the driver T’s and C’s that mandates their compliance with all applicable laws and which include heeding instructions to stop when ordered by the police.
“The driver stated that while he was driving, a few minutes into the trip, a vehicle double-crossed him, and it turned out that they were police officers. The rider asked him to immediately reverse the vehicle in a bid to escape from the police. As expected, the driver declined his request, stating that he had no reason to avoid the police.
”The rider suspected that the police were coming for him or the driver. The driver said he knew he did nothing wrong, so why should he run away. As you pointed out, the rider further requested the driver to hold his phone. However, the driver paid no attention to the rider as he was more focused on dealing with the police officers who had now double-crossed him.”
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