Daughter of suspect who died in police custody petitions IGP

Daughter of a suspect, Mr. Kehinde Omotosho who allegedly died in the detention of the Oyo State Criminal Investigation Department, Iyaganku, Ibadan, has petitioned the Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Adamu.

Miss Khadijat Omotosho, through a lawyer, Mr. Oluwasina Ogungbade stated that the arrest, detention, and eventual death of her father, Mr. Kehinde Omotosho, was unlawful.

She requested an urgent investigation of the propriety of the arrest, detention, and the circumstances surrounding his death.

She alleged that certain police officers were trying to cover up and distort the events leading up to this tragic incident.

According to her, in the early hours of Friday, 17th July 2020, several police officers from the Anti-Cultism Unit of the Oyo State CID stormed the residence of her father at No. 2, Ifedapo Zone 2, Alaja Meta, Gbaremu, Idi-Obi, Ibadan, where he resided alongside other tenants.

“The officers from the anti unit were accompanied by some other police officers in Agugu Police Division, led by one officer identified as ‘SOJ”.

“After breaking down the door, the police officers demanded to see one Mr. Kabiru who, about five months prior to that time, had moved to another apartment in a different vicinity.”

“Upon realizing that their prime suspect, Mr. Kabiru, no longer resided in the apartment, the police officers arrested the two occupants of the house – Mr. Omotosho (now deceased) and one Mr. Jelili Razaq – in lieu of the suspect.”

“On Monday, 20th July 2020, the deceased and Mr. Jelili Razaq was brought before the Officer-in-Charge of the Anti-Cultism Unit for interview. In the course of the interview, the OC demanded that both the deceased and Mr. Jelili Razaq produce their prime suspect, Mr. Kabiru, before they could be released.”

“However, both the deceased and Mr. Jelili Razaq informed the OC that they were all co-tenants and that Mr. Kabiru had relocated to another place and did not inform them of his new location. Nevertheless, the OC insisted that their release would be consequent upon their production of Mr. Kabiru. They were, thereafter, returned to the cell. It was at the point of this interview that the police informed the deceased and Mr. Jelili Razaq that the prime suspect, Mr. Kabiru, was involved in a fight which led to the death of a person”.

“There was however no suspicion or allegation that either the deceased or Mr. Jelili Razaq were involved in the said fight or committed any crime whatsoever.”

“The following day, 21st July at about 5 am, Mr. Kehinde Omotosho, died in police custody. Prior to his death, the deceased spent five days in detention while Mr. Jelili Razaq spent six days before being released on bail, both without any investigation, reasonable suspicion of crime, or arraignment”.

“From the moment of their arrest and until the death of the deceased, the officers of the Anti-Cultism Unit prevented the deceased’s and Mr. Jelili Razaq’s family members from visiting them or providing them with food.”

Attempt to cover-up

On 24th July 2020, the Investigating Police Officer deceived the sister of the deceased, Mrs. Sekinat Yusuff, who is incapable of reading or writing in English, to depose to an Affidavit captioned ‘Sworn Affidavit as to Consent to Receive the Corpse of Late Mr. Akeem Kehinde Omotoho’.”

She added that the failure of the police officers to inform both the deceased and Mr. Jelili Razaq of the reason for the arrest was in clear contravention of the law.

Miss Omotosho requested to know why the deceased and Mr. Jelilil Razaq were arrested in lieu of Mr. Kabiru and the cause of death of the deceased who prior to his unlawful arrest and detention did not suffer any obvious or underlying medical condition or ailment.