Metro & Crime

Police may investigate amputee sachet water hawker, Mary Daniels –Odumosu

Police in Lagos State have explained their role in the new twist in the story of an amputee sachet water seller, Mary Daniels, accused of lying in the viral report of her pitiable condition. The state Police Commissioner, Hakeem Odumosu, confirmed the presence of the police at the venue of the handing over of Mary to her kinsmen from Kogi State. Odumosu also said the police acted on intelligence reports that some people, who had expected to share from the N25 million promised the girl, were planning to disrupt the handing over ceremony. He, however, said the police might investigate the amputee, if the state government established any criminal case against her. The amputee hawker had claimed that she was an orphan with a baby and that the accident which led to her amputation occurred when she was a teenager.

Her pitiable story instantly generated sympathy from individuals, who started donating money and other things to her. The state government also took her case up by trying to ensure that some unscrupulous people do not take advantage of her situation to rob or cheat her of the donation from the public. The government handed Mary over to one of the agencies in the state to protect her against any mischievous member of the public.

A new story, however, surfaced on Wednesday when some irregularities were reportedly discovered in her claims. Her claims that that she lost her legs in an accident, when she was a teenager were been said to be untrue as she reportedly lost her legs, when she was a baby. There is also a new report that the amputee is not an orphan as claimed because she still has a father. Mary was said to have been receiving threat messages from some people who threatened to reveal the truth about her if she failed to give them out of the N25 million. Odumosu he did not investigate the case.

He said: “It was the state government. We all know what went into the viral story. “We got information that she was never involved in any accident that led to her leg being amputated and that probably she had an ailment, when she was a baby.

“Two, she also alleged that her father was late and that the burden of the whole family’s responsibility lies on her shoulders. Investi-gations revealed that the father is alive and hale and hearty. “In the course of all these things, so many things came up that made the state government to hand her over to the Social Welfare for investigations. Police did not investigate her.

“At the end of their investigations, if a criminal offence is established, the law will take its course.” Meanwhile, the Special Adviser, Office of Civic Engagement, Princess Aderemi Adebowale, yesterday disclosed that the State government would continue to protect all residents in the state, especially the vulnerable. Adebowale, who spoke at the handing over, confirmed that Mary had been in the safe custody of the government in the past two weeks. According to the Special Adviser, the government’s ultimate desire is to ensure that Mary becomes “a civically responsible citizen in the state”.

“She now has the resources to take care of herself and her baby and have a new lease of life,” Adebowale said. She explained that government took the step to shield Mary from possible fraudsters who might target the funds donated to her by well-meaning Nigerians. Mary was handed over to a committee comprising the representatives of the Ministry of Justice, Ministry of Youth and Social Development, a Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) and the leader of Igala community in Lagos State, Mr. Sanni Yakubu Ejima




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