Police arrest pastor for mysterious death in church

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The police in Lagos have arrested the pastor of a Pentecostal church, Popoola Oluwasomidotun, for the death of one Waheed Majekodumi in the Ipaja area of Lagos State. PUNCH Metro learnt that the 32-year-old victim was found dead in the church auditorium on Thursday, last week, at the Peace Estate, Baruwa, Ipaja. It was learnt that the father of four had entered the church on the fateful day, crying for help. He was said to have suddenly collapsed on the floor and died. Policemen from the Ipaja division were said to have been invited. They arrested the pastor and another member of the church, Folashade Ebun. Ebun told PUNCH Metro that she was on the church premises when the deceased entered the church. The mother of three said the deceased, who lived in the Abule area of Ipaja and worked in a block moulding factory, had run into the church for help. She said, “That Thursday morning, I was sweeping the church auditorium in readiness for a programme. While sweeping, a man ran into the church, crying for help. “He was shouting ‘pastor help me o, I will die o’. I thought someone was chasing him, but I later discovered he was alone. “He fell to the ground and I quickly called the pastor, who came in almost immediately. “Sincerely, we have nothing to do with his death. I have confidence in the God that we serve. He will vindicate us.” Twenty-seven-year old Oluwasomidotun told our correspondent he was preparing for a church meeting when Ebun, who lives in the church, called him. He said, “I am the presiding pastor of the church and I also live on the church premises. On that day, I was preparing for a programme when I heard Folashade (Ebun) shouting, ‘pastor, come and help’. “I ran into the church auditorium. I saw her standing next to a man on the ground. “She told me that the man ran into the church calling for help, and that he suddenly slumped and died.” The pastor said the owner of the church later advised him to report the incident to the police. The policemen, who however suspected a foul play, arrested both the pastor and Ebun. The case was said to have been transferred to the Department of Criminal Investigation, Yaba. PUNCH Metro learnt that the victim had been divorced for about seven years, and had lived alone before the incident. His uncle, Chief Idowu Animashaun, said he learnt about the incident two days after it happened. He said, “Waheed lived a reckless life; that was why I stopped him from coming to my house.” His ex-wife, who gave her name simply as Moshundat, said their marriage crashed due to his lifestyle. “I was married to Waheed for eight years and I had four children for him. “But in the later part of our marriage, he took to drinking and leaving home for as long as two months without asking how the children and I were surviving. “I don’t know who to suspect for his death,” she said. The Police Public Relations Officer, Lagos State Command, Kenneth Nwosu, when contacted said he would get back to our correspondent. But he had yet to do so as of the time of filing this report.

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