BY OLA AJAYI, Ibadan
The bereaved family of Idowu Adesokan who was shot to death when some policemen in Ibadan stopped his car is earnestly pleading with the Oyo State Commissioner of Police, Mbu Joseph Mbu and the Inspector General of Police, Mohammed Abubakar to help unravel the mystery surrounding the death of their benefactor and pillar of the family.
Eventhough, they have realized the fact that no investigation can make Idowu come back to life, they believe that if the killer is found and prosecuted, the soul of the deceased, would, at least, rest in peace.
Idowu,37 has succeeded in building his own apartment, he never knew that he would never live in his new house. No thanks to the killer gunshot fired by yet-to-be ascertained person. In fact, his death has generated ripples between the family and the police. His family still wonders who could have fired the shot if not the policemen who stopped his car.
While the policemen with the deceased and his friend were claiming that they were not the ones that killed Idowu, saying they just heard a gunshot from the vicinity, the family is alleging that the bullet that snuffed life out of the deceased belonged to the police. They are saying the gunshot was actually fired by one of the policemen who were behind the car.
Idowu and his close friend Biliaminu Aliu, on that fateful day, Tuesday morning, 20 November, 2012, had left their residence in Ibadan around 6am with their Honda Accord marked MS 768 AAA. Since Idowu was working as a truck driver in Lagos, he usually came back to join his family every weekend. As he left that morning having spent the weekend with his family, he never had the inkling that he would not come back home alive.
When they were heading to Odo Ana-Arapaja area, a sudden incident that never gave idowu the chance to know his killer happened. As they drove on, four policemen waved them down with their usual order demanding their vehicle particulars.
Biliaminu, who is the only one that can give vivid account of what led to the death of his bossom friend, told Saturday Vanguard, that “my friend wanted to leave the middle of the road to park, while trying to avoid collision with a truck. It was around 6.30 a.m then. As he parked, two policemen moved close to us while the other two were on the other side of the road. Then, suddenly, I just heard a gun shot and Idowu just shouted in pains. He said he had been shot, but I couldn’t know who fired the shot between the two policemen”.
“Realising what had happened, the policemen vanished into thin air and Idowu had to speed off from that point to escape another shot. The bullet pierced through his belly. He held it with his left hand until he could no longer move. He could not make it as he died before we could convey him to any hospital”, he narrated.
Enraged by the senseless killing of their loved one, the relatives conveyed the corpse to the Agodi Government Secretariat to call the attention of Governor Abiola Ajimobi, but they were denied access into the secretariat complex by the security men at the gate. They then moved to the Eleyele police station calling for detailed investigation into the killing.
Besides, the matter was reported at the Idi Ayunre Police station and statement made by the friend of the deceased, Biliaminu Aliu.
When the Police Public Relations Officer, Mr. Ayandele Lanade, was asked for comments, he denied the claim that it was the policemen that killed Idowu.
He added that he was killed by a stray bullet noting that his friend who was with him told the police that he did not see the person that fired the shot. But, Biliaminu said, “It was not that I said I did not see any policeman. In fact, the statement which the police relied on was written by one of them. They only asked me to relay what happened to them.
“What I told them was that two policemen stopped us, while two others were on the other side of the road. While the two were about to check Idowu’s papers, we just heard a gun shot and Idowu shouted. He said he had been shot and immediately, the policemen disappeared. It was the policemen at the station that wrote what the PPRO told you and not me”.
Though, the deceased has been buried according to Islamic rites, and his aged mother and his wife already took it as their fate, other family members are saying no.
The mother is bothered about who would fend for the children of the deceased. His little daughter, Ganiyat (8), kept saying, “they shot my father. Who is going to pay my school fees again?”.
Another thing that the family of Idowu is laying claim to is why should the police pay N20,000 for the treatment of the deceased before he died.
One of them said, “It was a doctor from the UCH that was called to the Adeoyo Hospital to perform the surgery. The medical report showed that the bullet was from an AK 47 rifle. They could not ask us for money and so they said the Nigeria Police account should be debited. Why taking up such a responsibility if the police know their officer was not to blame for our brother’s killing”.
Already, the House of Assembly has advised the family to write a letter of complaint and “We have forwarded the letter to the House. We need compensation for the family. Everybody has got his or her own responsibility, so we want the police to own up and offer us compensation for the care of the wife and six children that Idowu left behind”, he said.
The son of the deceased, Hassan, said, his father had promised to send money for his WAEC and NECO exams to the account of Uncle Solomon, my teacher at the Immaculate Comprehensive College.I miss him greatly. He was such a caring and loving father to us. He had promised me that he would assist in publishing a collection of stories I had written, which my teacher was editing for me.