By Esther Onyegbula
RESIDENTS of Kofo Abayomi Avenue, in Apapa area of Lagos State, have been thrown into confusion, following the discovery of the lifeless bodies of a businessman, Lawrence Olorungbon, his pregnant wife and three children, in their one-bedroom self-contained apartment.
The tragic incident, suspected to have been caused by the fumes of their power generator, occurred barely two days after the family moved into the apartment.
Vanguard gathered that the secretary to the late businessman, Njoku Treasure, could not reach her boss on his mobile line last Wednesday.
Further attempts to reach him the next day also failed, consequent upon which she visited his residence in Apapa, only to meet the entrance door under lock and key.
She said an offensive odour pervaded the air, and that there were flies buzzing around. She immediately alerted policemen at the Apapa Division, who visited the scene and forced the entrance door open, only to behold the bodies in their decomposing state.
When Vanguard visited the community, yesterday, the supermarket in front of the building was still under lock.
Some of the neighbours only identified the woman as Iya Israel, as they claimed they were yet to familiarise with her, being a new tenant.
They told Vanguard that the incident could have happened since Tuesday, last week, noting that the family was last seen the previous day.
A resident who identified herself simply as Blessing, said, “ All the tenants in the building moved in not quite long because the building was renovated. Mr Lawrence and his family parked into the compound on Sunday, May 22, 2022, after they were served quit notice in their previous place at Liverpool area of Apapa.
The unfortunate incident occurred on Tuesday May 24,2022 because that was the last time they were seen. But nobody knew what happened until Thursday, when the lady who worked at their POS shop at Liverpool, came calling. She said she came for cash. It was a careless death, the entire family had just been wiped out ”.
Another resident, Iya Didi, who plaits hair , said, “ that Thursday, I went to their compound to make hair for one of the sales girls, Kuffravis, who works at the supermarket. While there, I noticed the entire place was smelling. When I asked what was smelling they said they didn’t know. And there were flies everywhere, I didn’t know anything had happened to one of the new tenants”.
Another female tenant in the same building, said “ the last time I saw them was on Tuesday. I saw the man fetching water that night because the pumping machine had been faulty.
“Throughout Wednesday, we didn’t see any of them. And we didn’t suspect anything because they just moved in. His car was parked inside the compound and their burglary was shut from outside.
“That Wednesday, the owner of the supermarket downstairs was complaining that the parked vehicle was obstructing customers from accessing their shop. I called his number, it was ringing but nobody picked. We suspected something was fishing when the entire place began to smell”
Vanguard learned that when the Olorungbon’s door was forced open, the pregnant woman was found in her nude, close to the door, apparently trying to crawl outside to cry for help , before she died.
The man’s body was found lying down, with his two-year-old baby on his chest, while those of the other two children were found on the bed.
Vanguard further gathered that on Tuesday evening, the late businessman had an altercation with a commercial motorcyclist. The latter was said to have hit the former’s vehicle that was parked outside the building.
The deceased was said to have insisted on collecting N10,000 from the motorcyclist for repairs of the damage done on his car. Eyewitnesses said the okada rider angrily handed him the money, cursing under his breath.