Late James Emmanuel

The family of a security guard with one of elites club in Lagos state Eko club, James Emmanuel, has been thrown into mourning after he died from injuries he sustained when a cab driver, Habeeb Quadri, allegedly brutalised him while he was settling a dispute in the Bode Thomas area of Surulere, Lagos State.

It was gathered that the 77-year-old James, a security guard at the Eko Club, stepped out of his duty post to get something to eat when the events that led to his death occurred around 9pm.

While the septuagenarian was on his way, it was learnt that he saw Habeeb allegedly assaulting two women, including a yet-to-be-identified co-worker, who were said to have boarded his cab from Orile to the Eko Club.

James was said to have intervened and out of annoyance, Habeeb allegedly punched him in the face and he fell to the ground and hit his head on the floor.

When PUNCH Metro visited James’ house on Olatunde Onimole Street in Aguda, his grandchild, Tolani, said he died after the attack, adding that the cab driver absconded after perpetrating the crime.

“The driver ran away after assaulting my grandfather. But the two ladies he initially assaulted knew his park and we went there to lodge a complaint against him to the chairman. The chairman apprehended the driver when he got to the park and handed him over to my mum, who took him to the police station,” Tolani stated.

Tolani’s mother, Biodun, said her father lost consciousness immediately after the attack, adding that he was rejected by hospitals.

She said, “He (James) did not fight with the driver. He was on duty at the Eko Club and left his duty post to buy something to eat that night when he saw the cab driver in front of his place of work assaulting the two ladies. He saw that one of the ladies being assaulted was a cleaner at his place work.

“He asked the ladies what happened and they explained that they didn’t like the way the driver was driving and insisted that they were not continuing with the journey. So, the driver started demanding for money and this led into an argument and in the process, the driver started assaulting the ladies.

“The ladies ended up paying N100, but the driver insisted on the N150 he initially charged; my father appealed to him to go and convey other passengers. All of a sudden, he faced my dad and punched him in the face until he fell to the ground and hit his head on the pavement.

“He was quickly rushed to a hospital in Bode Thomas, but he was rejected; several other hospitals rejected him till he died on Monday morning at home. The driver is in the custody of the Bode Thomas Police Division and I want him to be prosecuted in accordance with the law.”

When contacted, the state Police Public Relations Officer, Bala Elkana, who confirmed Habeeb’s arrest, said the case had been transferred to the State Criminal Investigation and Intelligence Department, Panti, Yaba, for discreet investigation.

He stated, “On July 20, 2020, one Kayode Emmanuel came to the station and reported that his father, James Emmanuel, who was assaulted by a commercial driver, Habeeb Quadri, at Bode Thomas junction and was rushed to hospital immediately after he collapsed, had died.

“Before his death, Kayode stated that hospitals rejected his father based on his critical condition and he was taken back home but along the line, he died. The suspect has been arrested and the case transferred to the SCIID, Panti, Yaba, for further investigation. The investigation is ongoing.”