Barely a month after Benin teenager, Daniel Oikhena, successfully stowed away on a Lagos bound Arik flight at Benin airport, policemen attached to the Murtala Mohammed Airport in Lagos have arrested three teenagers for allegedly attempting to board international flight illegally.
Airport Police Commissioner, Salahu Waheed, has confirmed that three teenagers, Lateef Popoola, 13; Amadi Joshua 14 and Ukpabio Onyedikachi, 14 were arrested at different times at the Murtala Mohammed International Airport, Ikeja for trying to board aircrafts illegally.
The Police boss called for a rehabilitation of the teenagers by their respective state governments like the Edo State government did for Daniel as he handed the teenagers over to their mothers.
“These boys were found at different times at Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos. Their aim was to get into any plane and travel out of Nigeria”. He said.
“I decided to hand them over to their parents so they will be well taken care of and stop dwelling on the fantasy that you can just come into the airport, enter a plane and travel”.
“Their state governments should try to rehabilitate them just like Edo State did for the stowaway in Benin.
“Lateef Popoola is from Ogun State; Amadi Joshua is from Ebonyi ,while Ukpabio Onyedikachi is from Abia State.
“The airport is not a place that you can just come into and travel. There are formalities. We don’t want to see these children here again.”
Lateef said he went only went to the tarmac to observe how aeroplanes take off and land. He also said he had been nursing the idea of travelling but was not ready to execute it just yet.
He said he was able to gain access to the runaway by sneaking into an airport apron bus, but was arrested shortly after alighting.
He said, “I am not in school, I dropped out in Primary three. I was arrested last week Wednesday. I actually wanted to travel but I’m yet to decide where I will go. So, I just went to the tarmac to see the aeroplanes.”
Onyedikachi and Joshua were said to have been arrested after asking some security agents where Malaysia flights were boarding.
After being questioned, the boys, who were both in SS1, said they had no travel documents and were immediately arrested.
Police said Onyedikachi’s brother was in Malaysia and it was possible that the teenager wanted to travel out to see his brother.
Onyedikachi, however said, “We were at the departure area of the airport. We did not attempt to travel out. We were just loitering and wanted to see the aeroplanes. We did not want to travel out on that day.”
Onyedikachi’s mother berated her son for his escapade. She said she had warned him and Joshua to be well behaved at all times.
She said, “I had no knowledge of what they did. Onyedikachi is well taken care of and he is not suffering. I don’t know what pushed him to do this.”