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The Lynching of A Suspected Thief at The Oba Market

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The Lynching of A Suspected Thief at The Oba Market by : 12:00 am On February 15, 2017

2. You were an eye-witness to an incident in which a crowd of angry traders beat a suspected thief to death. Write a letter to the Divisional Police Officer in your area giving an account of what happened.

Sample Answer

3, Abiku Street,
Itire Ajasa,
5th March, 1983.
The Divisional Police Officer,
Nigeria Police Force,
Badagry South Division,

Dear Sir,


I was at the main OBA Market on Monday the 4th of March 1988 to buy a few provisions which I would take to the boarding school in a few days time. Halfway in my shopping, a fat woman who owned a big shop that deals on toys and other attractive gift items raised an alarm that one of the boys had stolen from her a purse containing N500 as she was wrapping an item for one of the customers. As she shouted ole! Ole! (thief ! thief!) one of the boys about the age of seventeen began to run out of the market towards the busy road. Naturally and spontaneously, a large throng of traders and would-be buyers chased after the boy. I followed the stampede too. I could see one boy wearing dark glasses, black shirt over a pair of dirty jeans trousers with brown cap.

As the suspected thief crossed the canal with deep flowing muddy water, he threw an object which I could not identify from where I was standing. He would have escaped but for many trailers that were speeding along the busy express road in quick succession. He stopped momentarily to change his direction but the crowd was near. He brought a short pistol-like gun which he aimed at the surging crowd but out of nervousness, indecision or guilty feeling, he could not shoot at anybody. From nowhere, somebody knocked off the gun from his hand. The gun turned out to be a toy one. Many people in the irate crowd began to beat and inflict a variety of injuries on him. He was shouting and vehemently claiming that he was innocent. This went on until some used tyres and petrol surfaced from the nearby vulcanizer’s shop. The boy who fainted before the arrival of these items was set ablaze and he died.

This was the summary trial and execution of a suspected thief before some police men came to the scene and arrested all those they could catch. To avoid future occurrence of this type of jungle justice, I suggest you post some policemen to the busy market.

Yours faithfully,
Abubakar Banji.

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