Thepolice in Ogun State have arrested a 23-year-old jobseeker, Ibrahim Sulaimon, for allegedly killing a motorcycle rider, Rafiu Gafar, in the Ajuwon area of Ogun State.
PUNCH Metro learnt that Sulaimon and Rafiu had an argument over money, after which the suspect hit the father of one with plywood on the head several times.
He slumped and was confirmed dead at a private hospital in the area.
A family member, who did not want to be identified, said the victim left his wife and child for his daily bread on July 13 when the incident happened.
He said, “He went out that day for work. He always plied Ajuwon and its environs. But everybody was surprised when he did not return home. We searched for him for four days without any trace.
“Nobody knew anything until a policeman came from the Ajuwon Police Division and showed us pictures of his dead body. He told us that he was hit with plywood on the head several times that Thursday when he went missing, over mere N150.”
A witness, Jimi Ola, told PUNCH Metro that Rafiu picked Sulaiman and a co-traveller, identified as Ibrahim Ahmed, at a Zenith Bank branch along the Ajuwon-Akute Road en route to their destination at Reality Plaza.
He explained that the parties agreed to a N150 fare.
He said, “When they got to the plaza, they gave him N500 and demanded a change of N350.
“But Rafiu told them that he didn’t have the change and Ahmed offered to go inside the house to collect a N200 note from his wife.
“However, because he was taking too long, Rafiu started complaining that they should hurry so that he could continue his work.
“There was a verbal exchange between him and the suspect. The suspect became angry, picked plywood used to cover a cesspit, and hit him on the head.”
PUNCH Metro was told that the suspect abandoned the victim on the road.
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After about three hours, some community leaders were said to have alerted the Divisional Police Officer in charge of the Ajuwon Police Division, who ordered a patrol team to the scene.
When the policemen arrived at the scene, they were said to have met Rafiu unconscious and took him to Tamara Hospital, a private hospital at Imole-Ayo bus stop.
The victim was reported to be bleeding through his ears, nostrils and mouth as a result of the attack.
The doctor was said to have informed the cops that blood had blocked his breathing organs.
During an operation to save the victim, he reportedly gave up. A death certificate, signed by the hospital, indicated that Rafiu suffered from ‘Airway Obstruction’ and died at about 3.45am on July 14.
The suspect, Sulaimon, an indigene of Kogi State, confessed to the crime in his statement to the police.
He attributed his action to the devil, saying he regretted it.
He said, “l am still surprised. I don’t know what came over me. It was the devil that pushed me into this”.
The Ajuwon Police Division later transferred the case to the Homicide Section of the State Criminal Investigation and Intelligence Department, Eleweran, Abeokuta.
Rafiu’s elder brother, Semiu Gafar, lamented the death, saying the victim was easy-going and gentle.
He said, “We are devastated by the death. He was loved by everyone. Only God can console our aged mother, his widow and child.”
The state Police Public Relations Officer, Abimbola Oyeyemi, confirmed the incident, adding that the suspect would be arraigned at the end of investigation.