The Ogun State Police Command has launched a manhunt for an Islamic cleric, identified only as Raheem , for allegedly killing a co- tenant , Monday Olaleye, aka Messiah.
The duo, who lived in a house on Adebayo Close, in the Ibafo , Obafemi Owode Local Government Area of the state, reportedly had a disagreement which degenerated to fisticuffs.
The fight, which occured on Sunday , February 11, 2018, started
after 49-year-old Olaleye demanded the N60 contribution of Raheem for the replacement of a burnt electric fuse .
Olaleye was appointed by other tenants to collect funds for the purchase of the new fuse , valued at N600 .
During the fight, Raheem , aka Alfa, was alleged to have hit Olaleye with a stick, while the victim used a plastic chair to fight back. Both men were reportedly injured .
The next day, Olaleye’ s health condition deteriorated and he was rushed to a private hospital where he was confirmed dead .
The deceased ’s family members were said to have reported the case at the Ibafo Police Station .
Neighbours who got wind of a possible mass arrest, fled the house .
Residents approached for information either declined comment or feigned ignorance of the incident.
A father of two said the police locked up the house when they did not meet anyone , adding that they left with three generators belonging to tenants .
He said , “ I remember the two men had a disagreement over payment for a burnt electrical fuse. which was valued at N600 . We are 10 tenants in the house occupying the 10 single room apartments . We divided the money and everybody was asked to pay N60 .
“ I was sleeping when I heard a noise . I was indisposed and couldn’t go out. But I learnt there was a fight between Alfa and Messiah over the fuse money. Within a few minutes, it was over and everybody dispersed .
“ By morning , the man woke up , took his bath , drew water from the well , and prepared a meal which he ate. But around 12 noon, we observed that his door was ajar . I heard heavy breathing and rallied other tenants
to get him to a hospital .”
Another tenant said no one knew the victim was ill until a family member visited him. He noted that the relative raised the alarm , blaming the neighbours for being uncaring .
He said , “ After we settled the dispute between him and Alfa, everybody left for their apartments. They were both OK . Messiah was a painter and he rarely went out . We all saw him do his chores that morning ; nobody suspected anything until someone said he was breathing abnormally .
A relative who visited him around 12 noon queried us for not checking up on him.
“ We didn’t get a vehicle on time to convey him to a hospital . We later got one. The medical workers did not allow us to take him down from the vehicle before they said he was dead . Inasmuch as I find it difficult to
connect his death to the fight , some people said he might have had internal bleeding.”
The news of the death sent fear into the community, as many residents took to their heels . The prime suspect ,Raheem , who had gone to work, reportedly did not return to the house .
A female tenant said later that evening , the police arrived in the community in a bus.
“ They broke Alfa’ s apartment and took some things away . They also locked up the entire house after carrying away three generators . As I speak to you, most of the tenants are squatting with friends and family members . We have nowhere to go ,” she said .
A senior police officer from the Ibafo division said it was a murder case , adding that it had been transferred to the State Criminal Investigation and Intelligence Department , Eleweran , Abeokuta .
He urged the victim ’s neighbours to come forward and assist the police with information.
“ The suspect hit the man with a stick and he died. It is a murder case, ” he added.”
The state Police Public Relations Officer , Abimbola Oyeyemi, confirmed the incident.
He said , “ There was a fight between the two tenants on Monday and in the process, one of them died. All the tenants in the house fled ; nobody reported to the police . It was when the victim ’s relatives arrived from Lagos that they met his corpse in the house . That was how the police knew about it.
“ When we got there , we didn’ t see anybody ; the house was deserted . The police found two generators on the corridor and because it was not safe to leave them there , they decided to secure them by taking them to the
station. We have not seen any of the tenants since then. “