Dayo Johnson, Akure
THE kidnap and alleged murder of the All Progressives Congress (APC) chieftain in Ondo State, Olumide Odimayo, is nothing but sad, unfortunate and a waste of a promising and innocent soul.
Police detectives are working round the clock to ascertain if he actually died of exhaustion as claimed by one of the suspects David, son of Francis Seiniyeagha, the wood supplier who allegedly carried him whenever he was tired during the long walk inside the bush or he was killed to avenge the death of their leader who was shot dead by some youths and police detectives.
David said he decided to drop the victim after the gang members discovered that those chasing them were closing up on them.
“We dropped him inside the water when we discovered that the youths and the police detectives were very close to us,”the son said.
Ekan Roman, who was also paraded, said that he was contacted by the deceased to help him look for a timber contractor hence his suggestion of Francis and his son.
Roman said he was not part of the kidnapping arrangement but that he was arrested for introducing the father and son to the deceased person.
Meanwhile, the deceased APC chieftan’s long time ambition to surprise his wife and children, who had been living in the UK for years by constructing a magnificent edifice in his home town, lgbotu in Ese- Odo area of the state, was aborted abruptly.
He was said to be very generous and was one of the party chieftains pencilled down for a board appointment expected to be announced by Governor Rotimi Akeredolu any moment from now. He was an aspirant for the House of Assembly election in 2015.
His death is sad because those who he employed to help in the building of his choice residence snuffed life out of him because of greed.
A family source said Odimayo, popularly called “Londoner” in the community, had been staying in his grandmother’s apartment anytime he was in Nigeria.
He however decided to put up his own residence this time around that he was visiting Nigeria with the intention to bring his family to Nigeria and surprise them with the building.
His three children ( two girls and a boy) have lived all their lives abroad and he was planning to bring them home in December for Christmas.
The family source said he just arrived from China where he had bought all the materials to be used in the building and had to engage some wood suppliers for the erection of some pillars and beams of the building.
His friends reportedly advised him to bring builders from Lagos for a perfect job but he insisted that he preferred local builders as that would empower some people in his community.
Sunday Vanguard gathered that the imported materials seen around the deceased’s grandmother’s house enticed the wood suppliers who were asked to produce 6,000 pieces of wood.
The wood supplier, Fikesei lnuesokan, was introduced to the deceased by Roman, a well known bricklayer in the community.
Fikesie, in return, engaged a palm wine tapper and wood processor, Seiniyengha, who involved his son, David, and they billed him N1.3m out of which he had paid N850,000.
ln an interview when the suspects when paraded, Fikesie said Seiniyengha brought the idea of kidnapping of the victim and they all bought into the deal since they were sure he would cough out money having paid them that much for a job not yet delivered.
The late politician, who has chains of businesses one of which is a waste management company in Lagos was a close friend of the state deputy governor, Hon. Agboola Ajayi. They hail from the same council area of the state.
He attended the June 12 anniversary held in Akure before retiring to his home town where he was kidnapped and later killed.
Odimayo is survived by an aged mother who resides in his house in Lagos. His father died many years ago.
The family source said he was to travel to Lagos on the day he was kidnapped as he reportedly woke up by 5am and went out of the house to check if the car was in perfect condition only to be swooped on by seven hefty men who started shooting and, in the ensuing confusion, abducted him.
News of the abduction of “Londoner” spread across the community and, owing to his generosity, community youths rose to the occasion and gave the kidnappers a hot chase but they escaped with their target.
A search party was immediately raised with the detectives from Ondo State Police Command and they, acting on intelligence report, located the kidnappers hideout.
To hide their identities, Fikesai, the wood supplier, and others known by the victim had allegedly contracted some contacted others to carry out the job while they coordinated behind the scenes.
But the bubble burst after one Johnson lkuforiji reported the kidnap and the bricklayer and wood supplier were invited for interogation and they confessed.
Acting on the information supplied by those already in police net, police detectives and youths in the community pursued the kidnappers and killed the leader of the gang while others escaped.
The youths and police detectives, who continued their chase of the suspects, arrested another one alive who later confessed that the victim had died and led the detectives to where his corpse was recovered.
The state police commissioner, Hilda, Harrison said the kidnappers’ leader had been shot dead in the process of rescuing the victim.
Harrison said the suspects invaded the politician’s residence at about 6am on June 16 and started shooting sporadically before abducting him and taking him to the creeks.
She alleged that one AK49 rifles and 21 rounds of ammunition were recovered from David.
The commissioner said that efforts were on to arrest 15 fleeing members of the gang.
Meanwhile, a family source hinted that the autopsy carried out on Odimayo showed that he was shot by the suspects before they escaped from the youths and policemen pursuing them in the bush.
Sunday Vanguard gathered that the family was waiting for the autopsy report before burial which would take place in lgbotu at a date yet to be fixed.
It was learnt that family members of the deceased had agreed to go ahead with the burial as his estranged wife and three children would not attend.
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