Reports have it that some police officers attached to the Ondo state police command have allegedly beaten a 50-year-old widow to death in the state.
According to Sahara Reporters, the widow, Aderonke Eze, was the owner of a ‘mini beer parlor joint’ close to her house in Akure, Ondo state and was killed by unrepentant policemen using a gun butt.
The corpse of the deceased, who resided at No. 1, Akinyemi Street, off Ijoka road, Sijuwade close in Akure, was dumped at the general hospital’s morgue in Akure by the police officers numbering about seven.
Reports say the police officers stormed the street at about 6:45 pm on Sunday in a Hilux van marked NPF 4236 B from the Oda Divisional Station and were purportedly carrying out an illegal house check with an aggressive search of all residential apartments on the street.
According to residents of the area, the policemen had been in the habit of raiding the street and making arrests of young boys suspected to be smoking marijuana, or ‘Indian hemp’, in order to identify their specific houses in the neighbourhood.
Ibrahim Adegunle, an eyewitness, said: “Even the woman was not at that home when they [the policemen] stormed the building. She went for a ceremony in the second street but fortunately, she arrived and met us arguing with the policemen.
“During the process of the argument, she demanded to know what exactly was going on and she was told that some people in the street are selling contraband items, mostly marijuana, to the youths in the street.”
Mr Adegunle explained further that Mrs Eze argued that she was not involved in any contraband business but merely owns a mini-bear parlor.
“The woman made several [moves in] resistance but she was again beaten and wounded with [the] gun butt while she fell on the floor of the passage, lying unconscious, and stopped breathing.
The officers immediately fled the street in their van and refused to make any arrest, sensing they [had] killed the woman,” he stated.
Residents and sympathizers in the community reportedly took to the streets of the neighborhood of ‘Sijuwade Quarters’ after the incident, to protest the killing of the 50-year-old woman.
“They will just enter the street and start arresting our young boys. Many of them would be [accused] of being in possession of Indian hemp. Before you know it, they would be asking us to pay N10,000 before we could bail them.
“This is not the first nor second time, but I do hope it would be their last time because the whole world must here this sad news,” a resident who pleaded anonymity said.
Responding to the allegation of murder leveled against the police officers, the state police spokesperson, Oluwole Ogodo, claimed the late woman was harboring young men who deal and smoke marijuana. According to Ogodo who spoke with Sahara Reporters via a phone call, they “didn’t kill the woman” but were trying to carry out the arrest of a notorious marijuana dealer on the street.
Only yesterday, seven persons were confirmed dead when the Nigerian police and military reportedly opened fire dispersing a crowd of the pro-Biafra marchers at Onitsha in Anambra state.