A businessman, Oluwaseun Adegoke, has lamented the death of one of his security guards, Shola Adeleke, in the custody of the Ogun State Police Command.
According to PUNCH Metro, it was gathered that Adeleke and four other guards – Olaitan Oluwaseun, Jimoh Ibrahim, Wasiu Adeshina and Hakeem Elegbede – were arrested after the corpse of a yet-to-be-identified man was found a few metres to Adegoke’s farm at Ipaya in the Yewa North Local Government Area of the state.
Upon the discovery, Adegoke said the Divisional Police Officer, Ayetoro Division, one Mr Olusesi, after telling him on the phone that the corpse was not found on his farm, requested his workers to come to the station for questioning.
The businessman said, “As a law-abiding Nigerian with massive investments in the area, I immediately summoned my farm manager and security team to report and help with the police investigation.
“At the station, my farm manager gave a statement, but our security men were detained and asked to make statements and the Investigating Police Officer, Ahmed Abdullahi, asked the farm manager to leave the questioning room.
“Abdullahi was questioning my men and also writing the statement for them; he wrote that they said we gave them guns to secure the farm against sticks, which they told him. This was a red flag and I immediately asked my lawyers to come in.
“To my surprise, the police sensing that they had no case as all the complainants they paraded couldn’t identify any of my security men as the supposed attackers, transferred the case to the state Homicide Department, Eleweeran, Abeokuta, for further investigation.”
The case, however, took another dimension when the businessman said Adeleke died in police custody, adding that despite the ongoing investigation, the police claimed that the corpse found a few metres from his farm had been buried.
He said, “On arrival at the Homicide Department, my men were about to be released when the IPO insisted that they must not be granted bail but must be tortured to confess to an offence they knew nothing about.
“On May 28, 2021, I received a distress call that one of our security men, Shola Adeleke, had died in police custody in circumstances the police couldn’t explain.
“Upon his death, the police hurriedly released three members of our security team. One of my guards is still in their custody and I don’t know his current state.
“My question is, if truly there was ever a murder, why would the police release three of the suspects on the same day that one of them died? It is obvious that the police feel guilty.
“We have asked the police to produce the corpse found around the farm and till date, nothing has been produced as they claimed that it had been buried. How do you bury the evidence in a murder case and claim to be investigating the matter?
“The thing that escalated the matter was the fact that somebody died under my watch. I have been trying to hold on; we shall use every legal means available to us to fight this injustice. Shola Adeleke will not die in vain.”
When contacted, the state Police Public Relations Officer, Abimbola Oyeyemi, said, “It is a case of murder. The suspects were arrested in Ayetoro over the killing of a particular person. About eight persons kidnapped the victim and after some days, the corpse of the person was found.
“The suspects were transferred to the state Criminal Investigation and Intelligence Department on Wednesday, and while they were screening them, there were allegations and counter allegations. Some eyewitnesses identified the deceased person and three others to be involved in the kidnap of the man whose corpse was discovered.
“They were detained and in the course of investigation, the man (Adeleke) became ill and he was taken to hospital, where he gave up. Three among the arrested suspects, who were not directly involved in the death of the kidnapped man, were released, because they were not on duty on the day of the incident.
“But another person, who was identified together with the deceased person as being directly involved in the death of that man, is still being detained. He has mentioned another five persons, who we are going to apprehend.”