“I was driving from Adabraka towards the intersection at the TUC Headquarters in Accra on Thursday. Traffic was at a standstill and my windows were down.

Like usually happens, one of the many beggars wandering Accra’s streets came asking for “something small”. I waved him off with the explanation that “nothing dey today”.

I went back to whatever I was doing… Next thing I heard, this dude was verbally abusing me in a threatening manner and asking why I’m refusing to give him money.

He hurled himself into the car through the passenger window until half of his body was in my car. I panicked and pushed him back but he wouldn’t budge. He kept crawling towards me in an aggressive manner.

I first pushed my phone out of reach and gave him a firm knock on the head with my fist at the same time as I tried to raise the windows. He leapt out.

With the passenger window now high up, he kept abusing me threateningly. I kept shouting back at him and wondering what the hell was wrong with him.

After swearing at me for a while, he run around the car to the driver’s side. I raised my window just in time to prevent a powerful landing of his fist on my mouth.

At this point, I was furious and confused. Why was this guy attacking me? Was I the first person today to have refused to offer him a gift or he’s been turned away so many times he wanted this nonsense to end now?

A taxi driver on the second lane was looking on in bewilderment. I looked around for help but none came. I looked around the car for anything to defend myself. There was nothing.

By now, this fellow was banging very hard on my window and I was scared like a rat caught between smoke from its hole and the angry hungry dogs at the mouth of the hole.

My windows were high up now but I could still hear his shouts distinctively although he was right in my face. Then he made a sign that suggested he was rushing to the side of the road for a rock to smash my window.

He ran off and just when I was contemplating my fate, the light 🚦 turned green and I zoomed after the other vehicles. I kept checking my rear view mirrors for signs of a man in pursuit.

I zigzaged my way through the traffic as I escape from this crazy man. For the next few minutes as I drive, I kept thinking of what just happened but couldn’t make any sense of it. My car was filled with the stench from this man who looked like he hadn’t had a bath since the last rains. I was really terrified and felt helpless. Imagine if this was happening at night on these unlit streets!

Please, when you drive in town, be careful. There are a lot of dangerous people out there walking around as beggars and other kinds.

This guy could have hurt me had he found a stone in time. And ooh, I’m going to look for pepper spray henceforth. It’s the only weapon I think I can use without sleeping behind bars for hurting someone in self defence.”

Source: Umaru Sanda Amadu.

Me: Please be extra vigilant on the road.