‘I’ve lost my only source of joy’

By Monsuru Olowoopejo

Lagos—Tears flowed freely in Badagry Local Government, Lagos State, when the two victims of Otodo-Gbame Community demolition, 45-year-old, Elijah Avonda and Daniel Aya, 20, were buried.

The burial of the two victims came barely two months after Lagos State Government allegedly demolished the community said to have lived  in Lekki, Eti-Osa Local Government area for more than 50 years.

At the burial over the weekend, hundreds of residents from slum communities in the state and friends of the victims paid their last respect to both men who were allegedly killed by  stray-bullets during a two-day demolition of structures in the community.

While Aya was buried at Muwo, Badagry West at about 1:30 pm, Avonda was buried at about 4:30 pm at Apa Kingdom.

Some of the mourners, who accompanied the corpse to their separate home towns, broke down in tears when their corpses  were finally lowered.

I have lost my only source of joy – Avonda’s mother

Speaking to Vanguard in an interview after the burial, Elijah Avonda’s mother, Blessing, who spoke in tears, lamented that her only source of joy was allegedly hit by police stray-bullet and died instantly.

The octogenarian, a petty trader, disclosed that her late son was a fisherman  who used to go to the lagoon to catch fish for onward sale by the family; twhich had been their source of income.

Narrating how her son met his death, Blessing said: “That day, my son was returning from the lagoon where he had gone to catch fish that would be sold by the family. On his arrival at the shore, he was hit by straight bullet and died.”

While still in tears, she noted that the death of her only son has brought another burden on the family, saying, at this age, I cannot run around so much again to generate income. My late son had been the main source of my fund.

“But today, he has been killed and left wives and children behind. The challenge is who will cater for the needs of the family Elijah left behind. I cannot understand.”

Police killed my brother- Victim’s brother

Elijah Ngbo, Worried by death of his younger sibling, Daniel Aya, alleged that an officer of the Nigerian Police deployed to the community by the state government shot and killed his brother.

Ngbo lamented that two months after the tragedy, the Police has not revealed the policeman who killed his brother.


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