Two domestic staff persons employed by the late former Vice Chancellor of the Federal University of Technology Akure (FUTA), Prof. Albert Ilemobade, on Monday confessed to killing their boss.
The staff, a former driver, Olayemi Bamitale, and the security night guard, Daniel Ita, confessed about how they purposely killed the former university don in cold-blood at his private residence in Ijapo Estate, Akure, the Ondo state capital.
The two killers, who looked stern in their confessional statement at the headquarters of the Ondo State Command of the Nigeria Police Force, along Igbatoro road in Akure, narrated the way they “strangulated” their boss to death with the aim of stealing and selling off his recently purchased Red Toyota RAV 4 jeep (4WD) registered with the plate number GGE-589-CF.
Confessing his crime, the former driver, Bamitele, said after working with the late Professor Ilemobade for several years and then eventually running away from the family, he was called from Ado Ekiti by the security night guard.
“He [Daniel] called me that he had already arranged how we are going to steal baba’s [Prof. Ilemobabe] vehicle. I was surprised but I told him am not presently in town that am in Ado Ekiti. He told me I should enter a commercial transport and come to Akure immediately. I don’t even have transport fare but he said I should enter into any vehicle and when I get to Akure he would pay for it.
“I got to Akure, I called him and he came to meet me at the popular Oba’nla junction where he gave me N1000 to pay for the transportation fare, and afterward he collected a change of N500 from me after paying the transport fare and he told me I should come to Baba [Prof. Ilemobabe] house by 9 pm at Ijapo Estate and I still know the location, is a place I have worked as a driver to the late deceased”.
Bamitele explained further, “I got there at exactly that time same day, and he told me he had consulted a herbalist who told him that if we really mean business in stealing Baba’s vehicle, we should strangulates him [Prof. Ilemobabe] to death and evacuate the vehicle out of the compound. He also told me that the herbalist made it clear that we should take along some piece of sand so that we would not be caught.”
The thirty-six year old former driver added that the security night guard [Daniel] lied to the Professor that there was an electric outbreak in the compound and they immediately bounced on him by strangulating him to death.
“I asked him how did he want to carry out this evil act since Baba is already asleep on the bed. He said I should not worry that he would wake him up and lied that there was an electrical fire outbreak in the sitting room and through that process we would quickly strangulate him to death and run away with the vehicle.”
“Truly, he went to the side window room of Baba and called him out that there was an outbreak. Baba too quickly woke up and passed through the kitchen and immediately we bounced on him and strangulated him to death.”
“He now said we should put his dead body inside the pantry close to the motor garage and lock him up. We immediately proceeded into the main compound and busted into the room where we searched for the key to the vehicle and made away with two big small bags, laptop, two mobile phones, an Ipad and N7000 belonging to the deceased.
“We passed through the main entrance to the gate of the Estate and even saw some policemen who flashed their torchlight at us but said we should go without even questioning where we were heading to at the night. We made our way outside the estate and headed to the house of his relatives along Arakale road, but none of them picked our calls.”
“According to him, they passed the night somewhere and by 4 am in the morning; Daniel said they should head to Calabar in Cross River State [his hometown] to sell the vehicle.”
“But I told him, the petrol inside the vehicle cannot get to Calabar. I said we should go to Lagos to sell the vehicle. I took him to where I knew in Lagos but on getting there, I explained to the buyers how we came about the vehicle, and they said they cannot buy it.”
“We left there and proceed to Ijebu Ode, but unfortunately officers of the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) stopped us and said that our vehicle particulars are not complete and they immediately impounded the vehicle and booked us N3000 to pay the fee into first bank and we didn’t have any money on us. We left the vehicle in their custody and came back the second day to pick other stolen items inside the vehicle such as the phones and laptop.”
“We took it to Epe so that we could sell them to bail out the vehicle. Nobody could buy from us unless they flashed it and someone told us flashing it is risky. We now later jammed someone who spoke the same language as Daniel speaks. It was that person that gave us N3000 to go use it and bail out the vehicle while we gave him the phones.
“We later bailed out the vehicle and went to Ijebu Ode around Iloti to sell it off, it was the person we contacted that implicated us by calling the Police to arrest us”, he said.
In Daniel Ita’s, the late professor’s security night guard, confessional statement he claimed that Bamitale masterminded the killing. He also noted that he was scared to join Bamitale to perpetrate the crime.
“Bamitale had firstly stolen Oga’s [Prof. Ilemobade] vehicle and it was later recovered but not without selling off its extra tire. We made a manhunt for him through the police but he ran to Edo State to hide. Later, he called me that he is Edo to look for buyers who would buy Baba’s vehicle.”
“I told him the first attempt you made was not successful and now you are planning another one and want to put me into trouble. He [Bamitale] said I should not worry that it is a normal thing to do and we would even kill Baba. I rejected and said we could carry money or any other thing like money or even tie him down and run away, but not kill the old man.”
“Since, I was born I have not killed, but Bamitale rejected that we would have to kill the man because he would be looking for our whereabouts. I bluntly told him, I couldn’t do it.”
“He now said he wants to come down to Akure, but he doesn’t have transport fare and that I should give him transport fare and I said there is no problem he should come and I would give him. He came and I gave him the money. He later came into the house around 9 pm and stayed at the gate where he called me to open them for him.”
According to him, “I immediately told him that I still hold up to my words that I won’t join him in killing the old man because the professor is a father to us all. I later asked him again, how are we going to go about it?”
“Although, I told him that there was electric outbreak in my security room, but the electricity was restored.”
“He now said I should use that opportunity to call out the baba to check it out so we could quickly carry out the act. If Baba comes out he too would stand in a corner and press baba’s neck and I agreed with him.”
“I called out the old man through his window and he passed out through his kitchen. I pointed a touch light to the ceiling where the outbreak occurred and immediately Bamitale bounced on him and pressed him till he died. We later dropped his dead body at the store near the motor car park so that people will not see”
“I felt bad and I was worried, but Bamitale said the deed had already been done and that’s not the first time he would carry out such dangerous act. He entered into the compound and brought out money and stolen items because he had worked here before. We then ran away,” Daniel said.
The Ondo Police Commissioner, Isaac Eke confirmed that the Ogun state Command of the force, led by Assistant Commissioner of Police, Mudashiru Abdullah, arrested the two criminals in Ijebu Ode.
Eke said the corpse of the late professor was identified by his children and detectives. Assisted medical practitioners have deposited his remains at the morgue.
He assured that alongside their accomplices, the duo would soon be brought to justice.