The two domestic staff of late former Vice-Chancellor of Federal University of Technology, Akure, FUTA, Prof. Albert Ilemobade, said they killed him because they wanted to make good money by stealing and selling his RAV 4 Sport Utility Vehicle, SUV.
Parading the suspects, including the night guard, Daniel Ita, 24, and driver Olayemi Bamitale, 36, at Ondo State Police Headquarters, police said they were on the trail of other accomplices.
The parade of the suspects came as the 78-year-old wife of the deceased made a wish to the state police commissioner, Isaac Eke, to allow her have a five-minute chat with the killers of her husband.
The suspects confessed that the late 78-year-old professor of Veterinary Medicine was nice to them, but that they had to kill him because they needed “good money to survive”, by stealing the RAV 4 SUV.
Bamitale said he was sacked after he had earlier stolen the car and attempted to sell it, but could not do so because the car had tracker.
The suspect said he came back after he was released from detention on the order of the deceased. He said the detention annoyed him, so he connived with the guard to finish what he started.
He said he had to kill the professor to avoid failure for the second time.
The suspect said their plan was to flee to a neighbouring country after successfully selling off the car.
Meanwhile, Vanguard gathered from a top police chief that three other suspects were reportedly in police custody, but were not paraded alongside the two killers.
Vanguard learned that the other suspects include a herbalist, Dr. Okon, the housemaid and the woman who helped the deceased recruit the night guard and driver.
‘I jumped on his chest several times’
Giving graphic details of how the heinous crime was hatched, Bamitale said the plan to kill his former boss was perfected on a Saturday, while the killing was carried out on Sunday night.
He said: “After I was released from detention on the order of my master, I went back to make another plan. I asked Daniel the guard if he wanted to make good money and he said yes. So I informed him of my new plan.
“Daniel was the one giving me information about what is happening in the house after I was sacked. He even paid for my transportation to Akure, because I have not been working since I was sent away.
“Daniel lured out Baba (late professor) by telling him that there was an electrical spark in the house after I had stationed myself near the kitchen entrance.
“Immediately Baba came out, I strangulated him, while Daniel put cloth in his mouth to stop him from shouting.
“After a few minutes, Baba was still struggling. I then jumped on his chest several times and he died. We dragged him into the generator house and locked him inside the store that Sunday night.
“We left the house and locked the gate outside so that no one will suspect us. We went insides his bedroom and took the car key and some other items such as i-Pad, two phones, laptop, two bags and N7,000, which we used to fuel the car.
“We left Akure and headed for Lagos. We left with those items so that the car will not be tracked again because Baba used these gadgets to activate the tracking”.
He said they were stopped by some policemen at the entrance of Ijapo Estate, adding that the policemen recognized Daniel as the security man to the deceased and were asked to go without further questioning.
Bamitale said they encountered some challenges after men of the Federal Road Safety Corps, FRSC, booked them for invalid vehicle particulars and they had to sell the phones and i-Pad for N3,000 to pay for the release of the vehicle.
“We sold off the phones and laptops after being booked by FRSC officials. We sold the phones to retrieve the car from them before heading to Ijebu-Ode with the hope of selling the car”.
‘Herbalist warned us against killing him’
Corroborating the driver, Daniel said he had earlier visited an herbalist, who warned against the killing of their boss but said Bamitale insisted that the man must be killed if they really wanted to make money without being caught by the police.
Daniel said Bamitale told him that if the professor was not killed, he would track the car again because he was unable to sell the car in his first attempt because the car was tracked and he had to return it.
Speaking before parading the suspects, the Police Commissioner, Isaac Eke, said the killers were arrested while trying to sell the car at Iloti, Ogun State, to a buyer who became suspicious because of the ridiculous price tag they put on the SUV.
He said the buyer later alerted police, who rounded up the suspects where they were lodged.
Eke said the suspects were arrested with the car, marked GCE 589 CF, and brought down to Ondo State Police Command.
He also disclosed that relatives of the deceased had identified the corpse and deposited it in the morgue.
He assured the public that the suspects and their accomplices would be brought to book.
“They will be charged to court for murder, not kidnapping”, he said.
Adeseni Ilemobade, who is the last child, said all they wanted was justice. Adeseni asked the killers what their motive was, despite all the family had done for them.