By G9ija

The armourer at the Ajiwe Police Station, in Ajah, Lagos, Inspector Adamu Shaibu has testified in the murder trial of Drambi Vandi, an Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP), who allegedly shot Lagos-based lawyer, Bolanle Raheem on Christmas Day.

Led in evidence by the Lagos State Attorney-General, Moyosore Onigbanjo (SAN), the armourer told Justice Ibironke Harrison that two of the 25 rounds of ammunition allotted to Vandi were missing from his Ak-47 rifle after he was disarmed on the day of the incident.

Shaibu said that he noticed the shortage of bullets when he received the Ak-47 from another officer that disarmed Vandi.

Vandi is accused of shooting Mrs. Raheem last December 25, around Ajah Underbridge, Lagos. At his arraignment, he pleaded not guilty.

In his recollection of the events of last year, the armourer who testified as the 7th prosecution witness said that on December 25, he received a call from Inspector Matthew Ameh, one of the officers at the scene of the incident, informing him that the defendant (Vandi) had shot a pregnant woman.

“When I told the DPO (Divisional Police Officer) what had happened, he led a patrol team to the scene. I called all the station guards to fortify the station,” he stated.

“Later, I saw Drambi Vandi and Supol Segun with the defendant’s rifle which he handed over to me immediately after he saw me coming out of the office.

“I personally disarmed Inspector (Fiyegha) Ebimine of his AK-47 rifle before cross-checking his magazine. The eight rounds of ammunition he booked were complete but when I checked the defendant’s rifle, I realized that only 23 rounds were found and two were missing.

“I immediately moved to the cell to speak with him and when I asked what happened, he started crying.”

The witness was then asked to identify the register with which he took record of arms and ammunition as of December 25. This he did.

Under cross-examination, the defence counsel, Mr. Adetokunbo Odutola asked the witness to tell the court what he did with the guns when he received them.

Shaibu said after he collected both guns, he confirmed the number of ammunition. He said he and the station officer then immediately transferred the guns to the State Crime Investigation Division (SCID), Panti.

He also explained that he didn’t count the bullets in the presence of the defendant because, after he was disarmed, the DPO had ordered Vandi’s detention before leaving for the hospital. He added that tension was so high at that time.

The witness also explained the procedure when a rifle is returned to the armourer.

“The normal procedure when you return a rifle is that, I will bring out the magazine and count the ammunition in the presence of the person that I collected it from, and then sign after confirming.”

Justice Harrison adjourned till February 9 for continuation of the trial.

On Jan. the 16th, the Lagos State Government commenced the prosecution of ASP Drambi Vandi for the Christmas Day shooting of the female lawyer, Bolanle Raheem.

The Attorney-General (AG) and Commissioner for Justice, Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Moyo Onigbanjo who personally led the prosecution arraigned Vandi on a one-count charge of murder.

The charge, which was filed on Dec. 28th, three days after the incident alleged shooting of Raheem in the chest, an offence contrary to Section 223 of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2015.

ASP Vandi pleaded not guilty.