Down Syndrome Patient Goes Missing During Outing With Father At Cele Bus-stop, Lagos
The family of a 26-year-old Down syndrome patient, Franklin Okoye, has become distraught over his disappearance at Cele bus stop in Lagos.
Newsmen learnt that Franklin was going out with his father last Friday when he went missing.
It was gathered that Franklin suddenly left the grip of his father and went into a crowd at the bus stop.
Franklin’s brother, Arinze Okoye, who spoke to our correspondent, said efforts to find him had been abortive, adding that the police had yet to have a clue on his whereabouts.
He said, “My dad and my brother were going out on Friday; when they alighted at Cele bus stop in Okota to cross to the other side of the road, my brother removed his hand from the grip of my father.
“Buses were coming to and fro, so he stayed back for them to pass. He looked around for him, but my brother got missing in the crowd at the bus stop.
“In the process of finding him, my father spent the night at the bus stop looking for him with the help of some policemen stationed at the bus stop. Their efforts were fruitless.
“The following morning, we reported at the Okota Police Station. The police refused to send out a distress call even after pleas that the missing person is someone who has special needs and cannot find the way to his house.
“It was not until Monday that the distress call was made. The police said they had to wait for 48 hours before they can file report of a missing person.”
Arinze added that the family had been displaying placards bearing the victim’s picture around for people to identify him.
He further said after seeing the picture, some people told the family members where Franklin was last seen.
Arinze said, “A man told us that he saw someone like him on Monday under the Iyana-Isolo Bridge. Our father rushed there but the person he saw was not Franklin.”
He added that a groundnut seller at Isolo told them on Tuesday that Franklin bought N50 groundnut from her, adding that he was with her till 7pm.
Arinze, who lamented Franklin’s communication skills, said it would be difficult for him to describe his address or give out a family member’s telephone number to people
Arinze told our correspondent that the family members were distressed, urging anyone with information on Franklin’s whereabouts to contact the police.
The state Police Public Relations Officer, CSP Chike Oti, however, said the DPO in charge of Okota Police Station said she did not have any report about Franklin.
He said, “I have called the DPO of Okota Police Station and she said she does not have that report with her and that the only missing person’s report she has was of a child who was found wandering and had been returned to the parents.”