An apprentice tailor in Lagos, Adenike Fatai, has committed suicide barely three months after her boyfriend, Bayo Atanda, reportedly did the same thing.
Fatai, who hailed from Kwara State, reportedly took a poisonous substance suspected to be sniper around 8.30pm, last Thursday.
The 25-year-old woman lived with her mother on Igbekele Street, Iyana Cele bus stop, Shibiri area of Lagos State.
City Round learnt that Fatai had been battling depression since her boyfriend, whom she was living with in Orile, a neigbouring community, reportedly took a poison and died.
It was gathered that family and friends of Bayo did not believe the photographer committed suicide, accusing Fatai of killing him. The accusation allegedly heightened the trauma Fatai was going through.
Although no suicide note was found in the room, our correspondent who visited Fatai’s Facebook page observed that her status updates revolved round death and depression.
On June 30, she bemoaned the loss of her boyfriend, who had died two weeks earlier.
She wrote, “How would you do this? Why! Adebayo Olaleye Atanda Peter; still can (can’t) believe this is happening to me. I can (can’t) even say goodbye to you. Ifemi, ayomi; may Almighty Allah forgive all your sins. Rest on!”
Less than a month after, on July 25, she took to Facebook to express how much she missed her lover stating that, “The saddest part in life is to say goodbye to someone you want to spend your lifetime with.”
“Feeling angry with myself,” she wrote in the comment section of the post with a friend appealing to her to stop thinking negatively.
The following day, she wrote, “Yaa Allah (Oh God); heal my heart, make it steadfast and make it strong enough to accept what you have destined for me.”
On August 15, she waxed philosophical quoting the late American journalist, Norman Cousins, who died of heart failure.
“Death is not the greatest loss in life. The greatest loss is what dies inside us while we live,” the post read.
She uploaded some pictures of herself in cheerful mood few days later. But on September 8, four days to the suicide, she posted the image of an archer ready to shoot an arrow, with a caption, “Ofa iku ojiji koni bae tomotomo (The arrow of death won’t strike you and your children).”
Speaking with City Round during the week, the deceased’s mother, Tawa, said she met her dead when she returned home from a prayer session that evening.
She stated, “That day, she finished cooking around 7pm and ate. She was outside after eating while I went to the mosque. Around 8pm, she came to the mosque to collect the key to our apartment and I told her to check the shop.
“On getting home some minutes after, I saw her lying on the floor with a bottle of sniper beside her. I called for help but it was late.”
Revealing the events leading to the relationship between the lovers, the mother said plans were ongoing to choose a date for their introduction.
She said, “She was learning tailoring in her sister’s place in Ikorodu. All of a sudden, her boss sent her away. She told me she had got another place to learn the vocation in Orile and that she would be living with a friend. I asked her to come and learn it at my place but she refused.
“Whenever I asked to see the friend, she would say she was not around. It was when I threatened to disown her that she told me she was living with her boyfriend. I tried to convince her that what she did was wrong, but she said the man’s (Bayo’s) house was close to where she was learning tailoring. I met with the man and he said he really wanted to marry her. He looked very gentle. We were planning the introduction when he died.
“On a Sunday around 11pm, my daughter called me and started crying on the phone. She said Bayo drank sniper. They took him to the Lagos Island General Hospital, but he died the following morning. That time, she said she would follow him and I tried to caution her.”
Tawa said Fatai became depressed and relocated to her sister’s house in Ikorodu, adding that she returned to her house after her condition had improved.
“I never thought she was thinking of suicide because she looked happy. Some clerics warned us that death was hovering around her and I prayed over it.
“I learnt she called somebody that evening and told the person that she wanted to go and meet Bayo and that she would drink sniper. I don’t know the kind of love she had for him.
“There was a day a friend of Bayo called her and accused her of killing him. I told her to ignore them. The mistake I made was that I should have changed her SIM card,” she added.
The deceased’s father, Idris, said, he did not know his daughter was battling depression as they hardly saw each other.
He stated, “Since her mother and I separated, I usually talked to her (Fatai) on the phone. Probably she would have told me what was bothering her if we had the opportunity of seeing each other.”
The deceased’s neighbour in Shibiri, where Fatai died, told our correspondent that she liked to be alone.
“I have observed recently that she rarely mingled with people, but I didn’t know she was contemplating suicide. It was so unfortunate,” the resident, who identified himself only as Sola, said, adding that the incident was reported at the Ojo Police Station.
The Lagos State Police Public Relations Officer, DSP Bala Elkana, could not be reached for comment on the incident as calls to his mobile rang out.
Another Student Allegedly Raped, Murdered in Ibadan
A post graduate student of the University of Ibadan, Azeezat Shomuyiwa, has been reportedly raped and murdered in Ibadan, Oyo State capital.
The police confirmed the murder but denied that the victim was raped.
She was attacked on Thursday at her house in Aba Ijefun, Akinyele Local Government Area of Ibadan.
The case is currently trending on Twitter.
Residents of the area told our correspondent that a stone used to kill Ms Shomuyiwa was found beside her bed with blood covering her body.
“The girl was raped and killed. As of this morning, police came to the place to arrest some people they suspected,” one resident said asking not to be named.
Another resident of the community, Aduwo Ayodele, told PREMIUM TIMES that “A bad incident happened in my community today. The lady was raped and Nigerian police force came to the place.”
When contacted, the Oyo Stats police spokesperson, Olugbenga Fadeyi, said the victim was murdered but there was no evidence of rape.
“Truly, the matter happened but it was not rape. She was attacked with stone on her head and left to die”, he said. “The police commiserated with the family”
Mr Fadeyi told PREMIUM TIMES that the commissioner of police was there with top officials of the security force.
“The commissioner already asked the deputy commissioner of police to take up the matter for proper investigation.”
Ms Shomuyiwa’s case happened barely 48 hours after 18-year-old Barakat Bello was gang-raped and murdered by unknown assailants in the same Ibadan.
Ms Bello was a student of Department of Science Laboratory Technology (SLT), Federal College of Animal Health and Production in Ibadan, the Oyo State capital.
It also occurs days after a female undergraduate of the University of Benin, Vera Omozuwa, died in a hospital after she was allegedly raped and assaulted in a church premises in Benin, the Edo State capital.
Activists have been calling on Nigeria authorities to deal more effectively with rapists through the strict enforcement of existing laws and promulgation of tougher sanctions.
On Friday, a coalition of civil society organisations and human rights activists held peaceful protests in the Federal Capital Territory and Lagos demanding a state of emergency to be declared on Gender-Based Violence (GBV) in Nigeria.
The protest which took place at the police headquarters in both cities followed a perceived rise in the number of rape cases in Nigeria including the recent deaths of two rape victims.
Cops, Passers-by Feared Killed As Robbers Invade Police Station, Bank in Kogi
A yet-to-be ascertained number of police personnel and passers-by were feared killed when suspected armed robbers invaded the Isanlu branch of the First Bank of Nigeria Limited in Kogi State on Thursday.
A source told our correspondent that the robbers, numbering about seven, came in two vehicles, broke into the bank and shot dead several persons.
The Police Public Relations Officer in the state, William Ayah, who confirmed the attack, said there were casualties, but the command had yet to ascertain the number.
He said the state Commissioner of Police, Ede Ayuba, had detailed his deputy, Akeem Yusuf, to liaise with the Divisional Police Officer in Isanlu to get details of the incident and report back to him within 24 hours.
It was gathered that about seven security personnel on duty at the bank and some passers-by were killed by the robbers, who were angered by their inability to gain access into the banking hall.
The gunmen were also said to have invaded the Divisional Police Headquarters, Isanlu, and killed some policemen on duty.
Another Student Raped, Murdered in Ibadan
An 18-year-old student of the Federal College of Animal and Production Technology Moore Plantation, Apata, Ibadan, has been raped and killed in Ibadan.
The teenager, Barakat Bello, who was undertaking the National Diploma programme in Science Laboratory Technology, was reportedly attacked on June 1, 2020.
The development comes days after a first-year student of the University of Benin, Uwa Omozuwa, was raped and killed in a parish of the Redeemed Christian Church of God in Edo State.
According to reports, the latest attack on 18-year-old Barakat took place at her home in Akinyele, Ibadan.
Initial reports stated that the corpse was found near the house.
The father of the deceased, Kasimu Elepo, told Sahara Reporters that he was not at home when the incident occurred.
He disclosed that the deceased’s sister was also out of the house at the time the tragic incident occurred.
According to him, the victim’s sister found Barakat’s body at the back of the house in a pool of blood when she returned from Qur’anic lessons.
He said, “I was not at home when the incident happened. The younger sister was not at home too, she went for Qur’anic lessons but when she returned home, she saw her at the back of the house with deep cuts all over her body. She had been raped and killed.
“Somebody called me on the telephone that I should come home but he refused to tell me what happened. When I got home, I saw that my daughter had been raped and stabbed to death.”
Meanwhile, the National Association of Nigerian Students, Zone D, has demanded justice for the victim, saying that the raping of women must stop.
The deceased, who was a member of the Muslim Students’ Society of Nigeria, was buried on Tuesday according to Islamic rites.
The murder of the teenager has sparked protests on Twitter with the #JusticeforBarakat.
UK-based medical doctor, Harvey Olufunmilayo, said the rape ‘epidemic’ must be brought to an end.
He tweeted, “Barakat Bello was alone at home when some men attacked her. She was raped and killed. This was in Ibadan yesterday. She was only 18. Barakat was at home. She is a Muslim hijabi sister. You mad people that come up with excuses for rape, what is the excuse this time?”
Another tweet by @mideglow read, “This is becoming too much!!! We are tired of burying our sisters and friends. We are tired of molestation and rape! Capital punishment should be meted to the perpetrators.”
The Police Public Relations Officer, Oyo State Police Command, Olugbenga Fadeyi, said in a telephone interview with The PUNCH that although the report is trending online, the police could not confirm it at the moment, noting that the incident had not been reported.
He expressed dissatisfaction with the failure of the family of the deceased to report the case for an investigation to be carried out by the police.
“Effort is being intensified to confirm the credibility of the report. At present, the Divisional Police Officers, Oluyole, and Apata divisions were contacted but we found out that the address that was quoted is not correct. When I got the DPOs and I inquired, the two of them said at present, there is no such report in their record.
“It is very funny when some people are too much in a haste to post such things even if it happened truly. I am not saying it happened because our records have not shown that. But, let’s assume it happened, the family is supposed to make an official report; that is another problem.”