If you haven’t read the previous episode, please click YEJIDE (episode 2)
As Yejide got the address of the police station, she dashed out of the house carrying her small handbag along. She got to the bus stop, asked a motorcycle rider for a ride to the police station, mentioning the address to him. She sat at the back of the motorcycle, gripping the rider’s waist for support as he drove off. On the way to the station, she kept quiet hoping that there wouldn’t be so much to deal with when she got there. She glanced at her phone, checking the time but as soon as she was about to drop it back into her handbag, the rider spoke out;
“Aunty, if you like your phone, abeg no bring am out. Dem dey steal for here.”
“Oh okay, thank you,” Yejide replied.
A few minutes later, the rider stopped at the green and yellow gate, letting Yejide know that they had reached her destination. She brought out a two hundred naira note and handed it to him before going in through the gate. As she walked past the security post and into the building, she got to the front desk and asked about her friend, Dupe. One of the policemen who sat at the desk looking like a frustrated man stood up and tried to get some information from Yejide before going out of sight, keeping Yejide on hold. She looked around the building and only one thing crossed her mind. I hope Dupe is fine.
After about five minutes, the same policeman came out from somewhere and asked Yejide to follow him. She nodded and walked behind him all the way to the front of a door. The policeman knocked, opening the door for Yejide to go in. He told her that she was going to meet the inspector general. Yeijde walked into the small office with wall paintings and decorations on the wall. To her left was the Nigerian flag and to her right were the pictures of Nigerian leaders. The office was neatly arranged unlike the entrance and reception area that looked like the building was many years old. She looked at the man who looked like he was in his late forties and greeted him before she was asked to take a seat. As she sat, the man asked Yejide a few questions about Dupe and how she came to know her. She explained to him that Dupe was her long time friend and pleaded for her freedom. Surprisingly, the man didn’t argue or give a bony face like he wasn’t ready to hear Yejide out, instead, he said she was going to be free but she had to pay for her freedom. He said that Dupe and the rest who were arrested were charged for prostitution as they were referred to as public nuisance according to the people who lived in the area they got arrested. He let her know that it wasn’t the first time and even though they had previously been warned, they stubbornly headed back to that area causing chaos for the locals there. Yejide couldn’t say anything but plead on behalf of her friend. She said she was struggling and didn’t have enough money to bond her out. The inspector general told Yejide that there was nothing he could do than for her to bond her friend out of jail or let her stay in jail for twelve weeks as the judgment had been passed down. She asked for the amount and the inspector general handed her a note with thirty thousand naira written on it. She looked at the note and couldn’t help but gulp. Where was she going to get thirty thousand naira? The only money she had left was about ten thousand naira after she had paid her rent and got robbed by the same person that paid to sleep with her. She looked at the note frustrated because she knew that the money would not even be a problem for some people but here she was struggling to produce thirty thousand naira. The man looked at Yejide and told her that she could come back for her friend when she had the complete money to bond her out. She asked if she could at least see her friend and when she was given the permission to, her lips formed a little smile.
The inspector general dialed a number on his landline and asked for one of the policemen. Not long after the call, one came into the office and was instructed to show Yejide her friend. She stood up and left the office with the policeman who took her to an empty room that had just a bench, where she was asked to wait. She told the policeman the name of her friend before he left the room with Yejide staring at the note that had the amount of money printed out. In less than two minutes, Dupe walked in with the policeman who signaled to Yejide that she had five minutes to talk to her friend. The two friends hugged each other as they sat down to talk.
“I was hoping you were okay. I hope say dey no beat you sha. Wetin happun Dupe?” Yejide asked, with worry written all over her face.
“I dey okay. Yejide, you no go believe wetin happun oo….” Dupe replied but glanced at the policeman who stood at the door staring at both of them before continuing in a whisper.
“I was just at our usual spot oo and this car drove up in front of me. As I was negotiating with the man who was going to be one of my clients that night, I heard people shouting ‘police’. The man in the car didn’t even consider letting me into his car. He just drove off leaving me in confusion. I say okay na. I started running when I saw some girls running in my direction. Some of them sef had already removed their heels. But many of us were not fast enough because the policemen caught up with us. That’s why I’m here today oo Yeji.”
Immediately, Dupe finished narrating, the policeman called out to both of them saying; “Your five minutes don pass oo.”
“Abeg oga, another five minutes.”
“Make una do joor.”
Yejide looked back at her friend as they continued their conversation. She told Dupe about the sum of money needed to bond her out. Dupe could do nothing but exclaim at the price. She apologized to Yejide for making her go through all the stress but that wasn’t Yejide’s problem as she was willing to help get her friend out of jail. They both discussed how they would come about the total sum. Yejide told Dupe about the money she had with her and how she planned on getting the rest. She had mentioned in a very low tone that she would go out for business, that night but in a different area in order to find a client that she could get the rest of the money from. Even though Dupe had also told her about the money she possessed, it wasn’t enough to complete the remaining amount needed. Dupe thanked her friend as they both hugged each other before the policeman told Dupe that it was time to get back into her cell. Yejide had also apologized to Dupe for not bringing food because she had left the house in a hurry upon hearing her arrest. Dupe smiled and said it was okay that she wasn’t hungry even though deep down her tummy grumbled like someone that hadn’t eaten in a month. As Yejide was about leaving, the policeman called her back and said; “You no fit settle pesin. Shaybi I give una extra five minutes. You no fit ask oga, you don chop today?”
Yejide heard this and instantly got irritated but she tried hiding it since her friend was still in their custody. She only told the policeman that she had no money except the one for her transportation. The policeman got angry and dismissed Yejide in a very irritated mood. Yejide could only wonder how much he was also suffering that he could stoop so low to ask for bribe from someone like her. She left the police station and took a motorcycle back home.
To be continued…..
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