A 28-year-old Togolese, Isah Lamin, who was badly burnt after she was doused with petrol by her boyfriend, Bakare Kabiru, during an argument, has died in the hospital five days after the incident occurred at Alakia area of Ibadan, Oyo state. A friend of Kabiru, one Ahmed Muyideen also got badly burnt as he was caught in the fire while trying to pull Lamin up from where she was pushed by her lover during the argument. Crime Reports learnt that the Togolese, a single mother of two, started dating Kabiru, a tipper driver sometimes in 2015, though the suspect was married and had three children from a former wife.
The lovers reportedly had a misunderstanding on March 13, 2016 at the Tipper Park at Alakia, prompting Kabiru to ask Lamin to go to her residence where she rented. After she left, Kabiru asked Muyideen who is also a driver to accompany him to a place, only for Muyideen to see that it was Lamin’s residence when they got there. Crime Reports further gathered that while going, Muyideen had noticed a keg of petrol that the suspect held and had jokingly asked that he should be given the petrol so that he could pour it in his vehicle’s tank. But Kabiru replied that the petrol was for his generating set to enable him watch football.
On arrival at Lamin’s house, a fresh argument broke out between the lovers, resulting in Kabiru slapping the lady. The slap prompted Lamin to hold on to Kabiru’s knickers, while Muyideen made efforts to separate them, castigating his friend for beating a woman. Smarting from the treatment meted to her by Kabiru, Crime Reports learnt that Lamin held on to his knickers again. The action was said to have earned her a hard punch from her boyfriend, resulting in her falling down beside a stove that a co-tenant was cooking on.
As Kabiru’s friend attempted to lift the lady, Kabiru allegedly splashed a quantity of petrol from the keg he brought to the house on Lamin, igniting both the lady and Muyideen. Muyideen reportedly rushed out, attempting to tear his burning clothes off while the suspect and sympathisers rushed to save Lamin by pouring water on her. Crime Reports learnt that Muyideen and Lamin were rushed to a nearby private hospital but Lamin was rejected, with the advice that she should be taken to a better equipped hospital because of the degree of the burns she suffered.
Policemen from Egbeda Division were said to have arrested Kabiru in the hospital premises, while the case was transferred to the State Criminal Investigation Department, Iyaganku, Ibadan, for further investigation on Friday, March 18. Things however took a different turn when news filtered into the State CID shortly after the case was received that Lamin had died. Muyideen was said to be receiving treatment in the hospital, though his burns also seemed extensive.
Speaking with Crime Reports on Saturday, Kabiru denied that he deliberately poured petrol on his girlfriend and, inadvertently, his friend, saying that the petrol spewed out when he mistakenly stepped on its container which fell where he put it during the misunderstanding with his girlfriend.
Giving an insight to what led to the fight between him and the deceased, Kabiru said: “Lamin was my girlfriend. We started a relationship in November 2015. She used to hawk a local drink, Kunu, around and we met in the process. “In February, she told me that she would like to get pregnant for me. I replied her that time was not ripe for such since our relationship was still young and I had yet to know her relations. I said I was not ready. She insisted that that was what she wanted. Because of this disagreement, she changed towards me and when I noticed this, I reduced my visit to her place.
“On Saturday, March 12, she came to me at our park and informed me that she was going to her parents’ place at Monatan area. She added that she knew I was treating her shabbily because I had already slept with her and was satisfied with that only. She said she would not take it lying low. On Sunday, March 13, I bought petrol for my generator and mixed it with engine oil. I was in the motor park when she passed by me. She said was just coming from Monatan. She asked why I greeted her and I asked whether her statement was because of the argument of the previous day.
When she got home, she called me again and started raking. She said I should return her battery phone and DVD with me. It was during this that my friend, Muyideen came to me. I asked him to follow me to Lamin’s house. I also carried my keg of petrol with the intention that I would go home from there. When we got to Lamin’s house, she started making trouble with me and I slapped her. She held on to me. I placed the keg I was holding on a bucket.
“An elderly woman tried to intervene but while on it, Lamin came to hold me again. I pushed her away, unknown to me that the keg I placed on a bucket fell. My friend went to help her up and I wanted to storm off in anger. In the process, I unknowingly stepped on the petrol keg, forcing the stopper off. And because someone was cooking within the house, the petrol.”