On Monday, a prosecution witness, Nneka Maryjane Odezulu, testified in the ongoing rape and murder trial of Andrew Ominnikoron, a BRT driver, about how she was raped from behind by the defendant.
Odezulu, the first prosecution witness, told Justice Sherifat Sonaike of the Lagos High Court sitting in Tafawa Balewa TBS that the defendant assaulted her from behind after ripping her garments.
She claimed the defendant told her she wasn’t a baby and asked her to take off her clothes.
Moyosore Onigbanjo (SAN), the Lagos State Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, led the witness in cross-examination.
She claimed the defendant struck her and gripped her neck so tight she couldn’t breathe before raped her.
Odezulu, a 29-year-old sales professional and mother, said she stood at Alesh Hotel Bus Stop at 8 p.m. on November 25, 2021, after closing from work, where she observed the BRT bus stopped.
She approached the driver (the defendant) and asked if he would take her to her bus stop, Jakande, which he agreed to.
So she inquired about the fare and was informed that it was N100; she boarded the bus and sat in the back.
A man approached the defendant about four seconds later and inquired if he was going to Oshodi, according to the witness.
He agreed, and they began haggling about the price until the man walked away without boarding the bus.
“The lights were on when I got on the BRT,” Odezulu recalled, “but when we got to Lekki Conservation, Lekki-Ajah Expressway, he halted the bus.”
“He then took a medication and swallowed it with water.” I didn’t pay attention because I assumed it was a common drug.
“After that, he motioned for me to move to the front seat, questioning why I was in the back.
“Then I got up and walked to the front to sit.” Then he began asking me questions such as what my name is, how old I am, and who I live with. As he was asking me questions, he pulled out his phone and began discussing two transactions.
” So he came to a conclusion and said, “Let’s go find a parking spot and talk about it.” When I told him I was returning from work and was weary and needed to go pick up my daughter from after school care, I noticed his manhood was up.
“Then I pulled out my big phone, intending to call someone and record what was going on, and he asked, “What are you doing?” and “Who do you want to call with your phone?” He got out of the driver’s seat and took my phone from me.”
” He dragged me to the rear with a little knife and told me to take off my clothing; I was like, why?”
“When we started dragging, he told me to take everything off because I wasn’t a baby.” He slapped me and tried to strangle me; I couldn’t breathe again. Then his face changed, and he said that if he kills me now, nothing will happen, and no one will know where I am; I should respect myself.
” He threw me down in the back seat, and as I was holding the seats and begging him, he pulled out a knife, tore my clothes, and raped me from behind.
“After that, I ordered him to stop because I wanted to come down, and he said I told him I was going to Jakande and he would drop me off at my bus stop.” When I arrived at my bus stop, I requested him to kindly give me my phone and open the door for me, and he began apologizing for everything that had occurred.
“He said I should give him my account number, and I told him I didn’t need his money. He said I was being stubborn if I didn’t give him my account number, so I gave him my account number, and he sent me N3000 and instructed me to purchase painkillers with it.”
“He asked me for my phone number, which I gave him before he gave me back my phone and then unlocked the BRT door,” the witness continued. Then I used my large phone to record the back plate number.
“A few hours later, he called and apologized, asking if I had arrived home and if I had picked up my daughter from after school; I did not respond to any of his inquiries and ended the call.” He contacted me the next day and several times after that, but I did not answer.
“After the incident, anytime I came home from work and saw any BRT Bus, I used to glance inside to see if it was him,” she added. When he passed through the Chevron Tollgate, I saw him four times,” Odezulu recalled.
When asked if she reported the rape case to the police, she responded no, claiming that she had a horrible experience with the police in Jakande and that if she had, they would have assaulted her.
The witness presented the court with the stripped dress she wore on the day she was raped by the defendant; it was presented to the court and accepted as exhibit 1 by the court.
The 47-year-old defendant, on the other hand, pled not guilty to the accusation brought against him.