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Ogun monarch’s assassination: Lawyer vows to expose killers

 
 
Nigerian News Update » Nigerian Newspapers
Punch Newspaper
 
The counsel for the late Olowo of Owoland, Oba Patrick Fasinu, has said he knows those behind the killing of the monarch, adding that he is ready to volunteer information to the police.

The lawyer, Olukoya Ogungbeje, who gave some names to PUNCH Metro on Sunday, said the police must quiz and prosecute the suspects for their roles in the killing.

This is just as the family of late Fasinu said only justice would assuage their pain, urging the government to get to the roots of the murder.

Our correspondent had reported that the 68-year-old had gone for a meeting of traditional rulers in Ilaro, in the Yewa South area of Ogun State, on Wednesday.

He was said to have dropped off his driver along the way and was heading home in his Toyota Camry around 10pm when he was waylaid by some assailants between Ijako and Isagbo in the Oke-Odan area.

The men reportedly dragged him out of his car and hacked him with an axe before putting him back into the car.

The assassins then set fire to the car and fled the scene.

Fasinu’s charred remains were recovered on Thursday by policemen from the Owode-Yewa division.

The state Police Public Relations Officer, Abimbola Oyeyemi, said the police would get to the roots of the death.

Ogungbeje, who said he had been Fasinu’s counsel since 2012, said he was shocked to learn of the death in PUNCH.

The lawyer said the Ogun State Government and the state judiciary were partly to blame as the late king had had several threats to his life.

He said, “I have vowed to see the Ogun State CP tomorrow (Monday). I will give the police the names of those behind the killing of kabiyesi.

“Kabiyesi had a running battle with a traditional ruler over the prescribed authority of Owoland. Owoland shares boundary with another community. The ruler of that community made some people baales. Oba Fasinu said it was not the man’s rights to appoint the baales because the villages fell under his jurisdiction.

“The Ogun State Government set up a panel of enquiry in February 2012. The panel invited all the parties. Afterwards, the panel submitted its report to the government. We begged the government to release the report so that the power tussle could be laid to rest.

“The government refused to release the report. I wrote two letters to the government to release the report, but the government refused.”

He said the matter was also taken before a judge at the state high court, but the judge dismissed it as unimportant, wondering why they were in a haste.

Ogungbeje said arguments to make the judge see reason with him were abortive.

He said the second list of suspects were those who fought the monarch over rights to the coronation of the chief imam of Owoland.

He said some persons had made several attempts on the life of Fasinu, leading to a petition to the Ogun State Department of State Services and the state police command.

“The state government and the judiciary should share blame for his death. I foresaw this. The state CP should be allowed to work without any hindrance. I will submit a petition to him on these suspects and if he didn’t take it up, we will go to the Inspector-General of Police. This man was wasted over nothing,” he added.

Ogungbeje said he spoke with the deceased last Sunday when the latter demanded some documents from him.

PUNCH Metro learnt that late Fasinu was the first traditional ruler of the community.

His daughter, Sarah Shiyanbola, said he was killed by mercenaries working for some influential people.

“The police and the government will do well to unveil these killers. This is what will bring joy again to our family,” she said.

The Balogun of Owoland, Chief Musharaf Tairu, said a suspect was arrested on Saturday.

“I will not give further details because of the sensitive nature of this case. But I want to appeal to the authorities not to shy away from their responsibilities,” he added.
 
 
 
 
 
 
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