Sunday, July 19, 2020 10:30 pm
Mr Ebun Olu Adegboruwa, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, this evening, reacted to the preliminary report issued by the Nigerian Air Force (NAF) over the death of Flying Officer Tolulope Arotile, the first female combat helicopter pilot, on 14 July.
The exact area that the senior lawyer responded to in the NAF statement is below:
“Upon recognising their schoolmate, Arotile, after passing her, Mr Adejoh, who was driving, reversed the vehicle, ostensibly in an attempt to quickly meet up with the Deceased, who was walking in the opposite direction. In the process, the vehicle struck Flying Officer Arotile from the rear, knocking her down with significant force and causing her to hit her head on the pavement. The vehicle then ran over parts of her body as it veered off the road beyond the kerb and onto the pavement, causing her further injuries.”
Adegboruwa, therefore, believed some facts in NAF’s submission failed to add up:
“1. Which is the best mode of calling the attention of a person, between hooting the horn of a moving car and reversing it?
2. Which is the best mode of recognition, between facing a person head on and using a rear or side mirror, after passing her? Do you recognize people after passing them by? Will any car reverse by itself while on top speed or the driver has to stop first and thereafter engage the gear in reverse?
3. How does a vehicle driven in opposite direction of a person, veer off its own lane, in reverse position, on top speed, it is able to avoid all other cars on its own lane, it is able to jump suddenly to the opposite lane, it is able to stop all incoming cars on the opposite lane and to go straight to hit its target?
4. Was Tolulope not moving? Was she deaf in any of her ears? Was she the only one in the Mammy market area of NAF base that was supposed to be crowded?
5. The two other occupants of the car, were they also facing forward, whist the car was reversing on top speed, not caring about the fate of the car and their destination?
6. This event happened during the day, so presumably Tolulope too must have spotted the car. She had dropped her phone for charging, so she could not have been distracted. So, how come she was not sensitive to the approaching car?
7. How was NAF able to conclude in its first press release that the car was driven by an over excited secondary school mate, when there was no mutual recognition between the driver and Tolulope in the first instance?
8. How is the car able to hit Tolulope before hitting the pavement? For the driver to be able to veer off to the opposite lane without prior accident means that he was conscious of the movement of the car. So, how come he didn’t notice Tolulope or did he run her down deliberately?
9. What was the business of Road Safety Corps in all this? Is FRSC normally deployed to military barracks and formations?
10. How come the police has not been involved in this investigation from the outset ?
The latest press release of NAF has created more doubts and suspicions than it attempted to douse.
We need more credible answers.”