A mild drama played out yesterday at the Lagos State Police Command, Ikeja.
A woman, who allegedly attempted to kidnap two children in Yaba area of Lagos, said one of the children looked like her missing 20 year-old daughter, who a diviner said had turned into a two-year-old girl.
The suspect, Mary Vera Henry, Vanguard reports, accosted the children, a 10-year-old boy, Mukaila Ya’u, and a two-year-old girl, Mariam Jubril, along Herbert Macaulay Way, at about 10.30am and attempted taking them to an unknown destination.
But, the bubble burst after the Divisional Police Officer in-charge of Sabo division, Mary Ubangha, a Chief Superintendent of Police, noticed the woman’s worried countenance as the two-year-old child was crying and at the same time struggling to release herself from the woman’s grip.
Commissioner of Police, Lagos State Police Command, Imohimi Edgal, explained that “the DPO suspected that something was amiss and decided to trail the middle-aged woman.
The suspect, according to the CP, noticed that she was under surveillance and quickly diverted into Saint Dominic Catholic Church, Yaba. He said:
“The DPO followed her up and warned the church security men to keep an eye on her and never allow her exit the church without the police ascertaining her identity and those of the children as well as her mission in the church.
The security men obliged and brought the woman and the children before the DPO.
During interrogation, the woman gave her name as Mary Vera Henry of 6, Akanni Street, Shomolu. It was discovered that she was not the biological mother of the children, who are of different parents.
She claimed that she lost her 20-year-old daughter whom diviners told her had been reduced in size and stature to a two-year-old child and that the two-year-old child (Marian Jubril) looked exactly like her missing 20-year-old daughter.
The woman was arrested and taken to the station for further interrogation.”
During interrogation, the suspect stated that one Shatan took her daughter away, without stating when and how, adding that the allegation of kidnapping was false. She said:
“I did not do anything. They have my daughter. Yes, the children they found with me are not mine but one of them looked like mine.
“I was told that my daughter was turned into a two-year-old. My daughter’s name is Ada. This is all a planned work by Shatan Oji and Mama Blessing.
They were paid N50,000 to do this.”
Biological fathers of the children, who later visited the command, told Vanguard that the suspect was not related to them.
Mr Mukaila Amidu, father of the 10-year-old boy, who was overwhelmed with joy, said he sent his son on an errand but that two -year-old Marian followed him without his knowledge or her parents’ knowledge.
Investigation into the case, which has been transferred to the Gender Unit of the Lagos state command, according to CP Edgal, was still on.
Effort is also on to arrest the fleeing brother of the suspect believed to be a co-conspirator on the crime.