Toddler Disappears During Naming

Opeyemi Ogundele


THERE is tension in Inuosegba community off Akorede Estate in Abeokuta, the Ogun State capital, following the discovery of items-severed human wrist, pupils’ bags, uniforms and ladies underwear — in a building. The discovery was made during the search for a missing 18-months-old child.

The toddler, identified as Hezekiah Opeyemi Ogundele, was playing at the venue of a naming ceremony at 4:10 pm on Sunday. But while the ceremony was yet to begin, the child was discovered to have vanished. It was gathered that the naming of Mr. Olusola Osunleke’s daughter was put on hold indefinitely.

Apprehensive guests, including the cleric, who was to officiate at the ceremony, began to comb the surrounding bushes and homes, searching for the child. During the search, they discovered the severed wrist of an adult human being, ladies’ underwear and children’s items near a bungalow, 35 metres away from the venue.

Upon approaching the building, two persons sighted near the premises claimed they did not see a toddler. It was gathered that later in the day, Ogundele’s uncle returned to the building, forced the door open, where he saw strange things. Following surveillance of the building, a commercial motorcycle operator who visited the building was arrested and handed over to the police at the Lafenwa Divisional Police Headquarters, Abeokuta.

The Nation visited the building believed to owned by a herbalist, Olasile Ifayemi, and witnessed vandalising of the over seven room bungalow, desecration of his shrine and destruction of over a dozen pots of horrifying fetish objects. The palpably bewildered residents said they never knew that a young herbalist lived in their midst and runs a ritualists’ den in the neighbourhood.

Operatives of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS), the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), police battled to control the crowd which was bent on torching the building. The 26-year-old fashion designer and mother of the missing child, Elizabeth, said she was preparing to attend the ceremony when she discovered that her son has disappeared.

According to her, during the search she saw two young men in a building adjacent to the Osunlekes’ house and asked them if they saw her son, which they denied. She said while walking away, she instinctively looked back and saw the two men making strange signals to each other which prompted some women to storm the building but they scared the women away by stripping themselves naked.

But before the men got to the building, the occupants had fled. But one of them who returned later was apprehended and kept in police custody. “I started searching for my son, and searched a new bungalow where I saw two men sitting outside the house. I asked if they saw my boy, but they looked at each other and replied no. As I turned away, they started laughing. I searched behind the house where I saw many fetish objects. I quickly turned back and I couldn’t find the young men again, so I called my husband Daniel and he reported to the police.”

Police Commissioner Abdulmajid Ali said investigation has begun. He said: “I want to make it clear to the people that I am here to work and reduce crime. “The site that was discovered has no relationship with the boy and other human parts found there. We will let you see what really happened when we finish our investigation.”

Culled from The Nation

— Jul 28, 2015 @ 13:50 GMT


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