By Chris Ochayi & Joseph Erunke
ABUJA—State Security Service, SSS, yesterday, paraded members of a six-man armed robbery gang, which allegedly killed Mr. Olaitan Oyerinde, the Principal Private Secretary to Governor Adams Oshiomhole of Edo State.
The suspect, whose names were given as Mohammed Ibrahim Abdulahi, Raymond Onajite Origbo, Chikezie Edeh, Saidu Yakubu (a.k.a. Imam), Sani Abdullahi Abubakar and Hassan Bashiru, were arrested by the service.
Deputy Director, Public Relations of the service, Marilyn Ogar, who addressed newsmen while parading the suspects at the SSS headquarters in Abuja, said: “Investigation revealed that careless statements made by Ali Ihade, Oyerinde’s security guard, at various times about his master’s position in government, attracted the attention of the prime suspect, Mohammed Ibrahim Abdullahi, who consequently hatched a robbery plan.
“On the day of the robbery, Abdullahi specifically instructed other gang members to tie up Ihade before they entered Oyerinde’s residence so that Ihade will not see his face”
She said the suspects confessed to have shot and killed Oyerinde because when he (Oyerinde) ran into his bedroom and attempted to go underneath his bed, they believed he was trying to reach for a gun.
She said: “According to the robbery gang, Oyerinde was shot and killed by the prime suspect, Mohammed Ibrahim Abdullahi, when he ran into his bedroom and attempted to go underneath his bed. Abdullahi said he believed Oyerinde was reaching for a gun under the bed and therefore shot him.”
Items recovered from the suspects, which were displayed during the parade, included four blackberry phones, one i-pad, two galaxy pads, one laptop, a wedding ring and unspecified sum of money belonging to Adeyinka Oletubo, brother-in-law to late Oyerinde.
The suspects, who were given opportunity to talk to reporters, confessed to have killed the late Olaitan Oyerinde, but said their action was in self-defence, as he made his way to the bedroom when they released a shot to intimidate him.
They said they were armed robbers and had gone to the late Oyerinde’s residence purely on a robbery mission.
Speaking in broken English, Abdullahi said: “Raymond na im first shoot am. As e run de go inside bedroom, I come think say him wan carry gun, na him make I come shoot am one time.”
He had initially said the gunshot that killed Oyerinde was released by Raymond.
Another suspect, Chikezie Edeh, a 30-year-old indigene of Akpugo village in Nkanu Local Government Area of Enugu State, said he was deported from France in 2006 for what he described as “having incomplete papers.”
He admitted receiving a mobile phone and an apple i-pad computer as his share from the operation, which he sold for N10,000:00.
It would be recalled that in the early hours of May 4, Oyerinde was killed by gunmen at his residence located at 65, 2nd Ugbo Road, GRA, Benin City.