The Ondo State Police Command has arrested two suspects who allegedly stole the oracle of Irese community in Ifedore Local Government of the state and strangled a 90-year-old man, Ajayi Ajisegiri, to death.
The nonagenarian before his death, was a chief priest, the custodian of the oracle and also the head of hunters in Irese community.
The two suspects, Dada Ologundudu, 71, and John Samson, 27, were said to have conspired to steal the oracle and invaded the home of the Chief priest.
One of the suspects, Ologundudu, a commercial motorcyclist popularly known as Kayefi, was said to have stolen the oracle from the Oke Mission residence of the custodian.
The Chief Priest who suspected Ologundudu approached him and warned him to return the oracle and threatened to inform the community leaders about the missing oracle if Ologundudu failed to return it.
According to a source who spoke to Vanguard, the lifeless body of the Ajisegiri was found in his room, a day after he threatened to report the suspect to the entire community for stealing the community’s spiritual property, known as ‘Osho Osi Ode’ which was kept in his custody.
The suspect’s landlady, Mrs. Beatrice Ademeti, also confirmed that the deceased came to her house a day before the incident, warning the suspect to return the community oracle.
Ademeti said the suspect claimed to be a herbalist and had been close to the deceased to know about the oracle before he eventually stole it.
“The motorcyclist cannot say he’s not responsible for the death of Ajisegiri, because, on the night of the incident, I overheard the deceased shouting at the suspect, saying he gave him a day to return the community’s property he took in his room or else he would report the case to the whole town the next day,” she said.
“The suspect later came back at night to give Baba three sachet of alcoholic drink which made the deceased sleep off. The next day around 8:00 am, l noticed the deceased had not opened his door which was unusual of him.
“I called other neighbours around and I explained to them that the deceased had not opened his door since morning, which made them force his door open. To our surprise, we found his lifeless body on the floor in his room with bruises and blood on his neck.”
It was gathered that the suspect tried to escape from the town after the death of the oracle custodian but he was apprehended by the people of the community who handed him over to the palace.
The suspect was said to have initially denied stealing the oracle and killing the victim but he later recanted after he was threatened by the community leaders.
Ologundudu told the community leaders where he hid the oracle after which it was retrieved in an uncompleted building with the help of the police detectives. The oracle was then taken back to the community shrine.
The suspect was handed to the police detectives at Ijare Police Station while the case was transferred to the State Criminal Investigation and Intelligence Department (SCIID), Akure, for further investigation.
The Police Spokesperson, Funmi Odunlami, who confirmed the incident, said the two suspects have been arrested in connection with the killing of the deceased and stealing of the oracle.