The tailor, Mubarak Usman, who was hospitalized after he was shot in the leg by an alleged Department of State Services (DSS) operative in Garki, Abuja has spoken about his harrowing ordeal.
There had been a report that a tailor was shot at Garki Market during the week over an argument with an alleged DSS operative.
Usman, in an interview with Channels TV said a woman, who had come to him in need of his services, reported him to a DSS operative on August 23.
According to him, the woman visited his shop to ask about the six pieces of fabric she had handed him along with a sample belonging to her mother-in-law.
Usman says he told the DSS operative that he had completed two of the clothes and had begun on two others.
He adds that he admitted to having not worked on the last two and that he informed the customer that the sample was missing.
The tailor stated that the DSS operative left and told him to find the missing clothing item and complete the other ones to be collected upon his return.
Usman further stated that when the DSS operative returned he had completed work on three of the clothes and gave them to the operative.
He, however, stated that he thought to call the customer to be sure she was the one who had sent the DSS operative.
According to Usman, the DSS operatives refused but he insisted on calling her leading to an argument with the DSS operative who promised to return on another day.
Usman said he went to the nearest police station to report the matter and that the police officer on duty cautioned him against following the supposed DSS operative if he came to arrest the tailor.
He added that the police officer gave him a number to call if the operative came to arrest him.
Usman disclosed, “After I came back from the Mosque on Friday, I saw three DSS officers with guns. One is yellow (fair-complexioned); he was wearing a T-shirt with DSS trousers. The other two were in DSS outfits; two of them had shotguns.
“They said, ‘Are you Usman?’ I said yes, and they said, ‘You are under arrest.’ I said, ‘Okay, let me lock my shop.’ But in my mind, I was looking for how to call the police officer who gave me his number.”
Usman noted that he did not have airtime on his phone and could not top up at that moment because he was being hurried out.
He added, “They said, ‘Let’s go,’ and I asked if I could carry the clothes; they said okay. But I was looking for a way to run.
“I dropped the clothes and ran into the neighbouring block to enter the police station which was nearby. In between the two blocks, I heard a gunshot but I kept on running. Close to the other block, I just fell down.”
The tailor said immediately he fell, he saw blood gushing from his left leg, close to the knee.
He noted, “I was shouting, ‘I am not a criminal.’ I was telling the people there, ‘Please, call the police for me! The police are aware of this!’ The DSS started beating me; one held my neck and I couldn’t shout again. They started dragging me and that was when I sustained most injuries on my body.”
Usman said he told one of his former apprentices to call the police.
He said, “He ran out to call them. The DSS dragged me close to their vehicle before people surrounded us, stopping them from taking me. The police later came and insisted that they won’t take me away and after some time they left.”