By EVELYN USMAN
LAGOS – Indications, emerged, yesterday, that the alleged man-eater, Clifford Oji, who was arrested 13 years ago at Toyota Bus-stop on Oshodi/Apapa Expressway, with human parts, which he reportedly claimed he sold to notable Nigerians, had completely gone mad at Kirikiri Maximum Prison, Lagos, where he has been awaiting trial.
Deputy Comptroller of Prisons, Mr. Noel Ailewon, during a visit by the Lagos State Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice, Mr. Ade Ipaye and representatives of the Office of the Public Defender, OPD, also said 554 persons have been discovered to be awaiting trial in the prison for several years.
The visit to the prisons was to evaluate the number of awaiting-trial persons and possibly secure the release of those who should not to be there.
Ailewon, who said Oji was in a bad state, as his health had deteriorated, told Ipaye: “Orji’s health is getting worse. He has gone completely mad, vomiting and even defecating without restraint and is naked most of the time.”
OPD Director, Mrs. Omotola Rotimi, said efforts were made to address Oji’s mental state, but regretted that all proved abortive.
The 46-year-old alleged cannibal, she noted, had been taken to two psychiatric hospitals for treatment but was rejected.
She said: “Initially, we took Orji to Yaba Psychiatric Hospital, Lagos, but was rejected because they claimed they did not have long-term medical facilities. Subsequently, he was taken to another hospital in Ewekoro, Ogun State, but was also rejected.”
Ipaye attributed Oji’s state to the inability of his case to be heard, an indication capable of keeping him longer among the list of those awaiting-trial.
Describing his case as a pathetic one, Ipaye said: “Orji is mentally disturbed and no hospital is accepting him. Unfortunately, one cannot be tried except one is mentally stable. So, he is stuck in the middle and all we can do is to find help for him.”