If Sunday Godwin, a 49-year-old labourer in the Orile area of Lagos State, knew his life was on the line during an argument with Yakubu Abubakar, a porter (popularly known as cart pusher) in the neighbourhood, he would have probably forfeited the N200 change that culminated into his tragic end.
Abubakar reportedly stabbed the indigene of Bayelsa State in the neck at Eleganza Plaza, Alaba Suru, Orile for pestering him for the change.
Our correspondent learnt that Abubakar had carried some loads for a firm around the plaza which Godwin worked with last Saturday and was reportedly paid through the deceased.
It was gathered that Abubakar was supposed to give N200 change to Godwin, but he refused.
The deceased, on several occasions, reportedly requested the change from Abubakar to no avail.
Saturday PUNCH gathered that an argument eventually broke out between Godwin and Abubakar over the change which degenerated into a scuffle.
The suspect was said to have picked up a broken tile and stabbed Godwin in the neck. He was said to have fled the scene, leaving the victim in a pool of blood.
A trader in the area, who identified himself simply as Yusuf, said Godwin was rushed to a private hospital in Orile, where he was confirmed dead on arrival.
He said, “Abubakar was a cart pusher while Godwin worked as a labourer in a firm around Eleganza Plaza. On that day, the firm asked Godwin to get a cart pusher to join him in carrying some loads. When they were done, Godwin paid him. I did not know how much they agreed on and the amount he paid him, but I learnt Abubakar was supposed to return N200 change.
“The man (Godwin) asked for the change but it appeared Abubakar was not ready to return the change. After a while, Godwin insisted that he wanted to collect the change without any further delay. That was how an argument started between them. There were some pieces of broken tiles in front of a shop where tiles are being sold. Abubakar picked one and stabbed Godwin in the neck. He bled to death before he got to the hospital while Abubakar ran away.”
A source told our correspondent that policemen at the Orile division were alerted to the incident and a team of operatives was deployed in the scene.
The source said five persons were arrested for aiding the escape of the suspect, adding that a manhunt had been launched for him.
He said, “A trader reported at the station that while he was at his shop at Eleganza Plaza, he heard that a cart pusher and a labourer were fighting because of N200 change and in the process, one Sunday Godwin was stabbed with a broken tile on his right side neck and sustained a serious injury. He died from the injury on his arrival at a hospital.
“Meanwhile, five persons have been arrested for aiding and abeting the crime and failing to assist the police in tracking down the suspect. They saw him running away but did not make any attempt to stop him and hand him over to the police.”
A relative of the deceased, Friday Aiyeju, who spoke briefly with Saturday PUNCH on the incident, said he was in his office that day when he was called on the telephone about Godwin’s death.
“I did not know what actually led to the incident. I was only told he had an issue with somebody over N200 change. Unfortunately, he did not have any child. We are still waiting for the police to release his corpse so that we can bury him,” he added.
The Lagos State Police Public Relations Officer, CSP Chike Oti, said Godwin’s body had been deposited in the Mainland General Hospital morgue for autopsy.
He said some suspects were arrested in connection with the murder and had been transferred to the State Criminal Investigation and Intelligence Department, Yaba.
He said, “Upon the receipt of information that some cart pushers allegedly engaged each other in a fight over N200 at Eleganga Plaza, Suru Alaba, Orile and one of them was stabbed in the neck, a team of policemen was quickly mobilised to the scene.
“The victim was rescued and rushed to the hospital for treatment where he later died. Some suspects have been arrested in connection with the case and efforts have been intensified to arrest the prime suspect.”