Posted By: Odunayo Ogunmola
Families of slain World Bank consultant, Dr. Ayodeji Daramola, and the late Tunde Omojola have urged interest groups to pay attention to the murder trial which reopens today.
The families urged reporters, Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs), lawyers, students’ bodies and the public to attend the continuation of the trial before Justice Adewale Fowe at the State High Court in Ado-Ekiti.
Daramola was killed on August 14, 2006 at Ijan-Ekiti
He planned to run for governor.
Omojola was killed in 2005 during the councillorship poll at Ifaki-Ekiti.
Both families, last week, petitioned the National Judicial Council (NJC), the Presidency, the Inspector-General of Police (IGP), the Director-General of the Department of State Services (DSS) and Chief Judge of Ekiti State.
They called their attention to an alleged manipulation of their sons’ murder trial in what they called a secret hearing where the families, who were the chief complainants, were kept in the dark.
The petition also called the attention of NJC to a suspected fake list of defence and prosecution witnesses, all allegedly compiled to falsely testify in court to save some individuals indicted in the killings.
According to the petition, none of the purported witnesses knew they were listed for either the prosecution or defence in the trial.
The families said though the witnesses were members of the two deceased men’s families, but they were not aware of any trial.
They added that their witnesses would be impersonated by another set of people allegedly paid to pose as witnesses.
In a joint statement yesterday, representatives of the two families – Mrs Kehinde Olubunmi Daramola, Daramola’s widow, and Suleiman Bakare, Omojola’s brother-in-law – said they wanted reporters, lawyers, students and the public to attend the hearing to see out how the “witnesses” attained that status without the knowledge of the families of the victims.
In the petition, Bakare, who was one of the purported witnesses in Omojola’s murder, confirmed that he was not aware of the trial; same with other 10 purported witnesses in Omojola’s case.
At Ijan, two of the purported witnesses from Daramola’s family said they were not aware of any trial, while two other purported witnesses – Femi Kehinde and Edward Kehinde – never existed in the community.
The families sought the support of Nigerians to insist on due process and open trial to ensure justice for their slain sons.