The nation’s security agencies will never cease to amaze Nigerians. Or what else can we say about the successes of the State Security Service, SSS, and the Nigeria Police in arresting two different gangs for the murder of one man on the same date? We are talking of the cold-blooded killing of Comrade Olaitan Oyerinde, until his death private secretary to Governor Adams Oshiomhole. In Benin, the police have arrested David Ugolor and some others for the murder. Ugolor is said to be very close to the late Oyerinde. The hapless Ugolor is still in detention and his family is screaming “blue murder”. If what has come out from police sources so far is anything to go by, Oyerinde was assassinated. They are still digging to find the why of the dastardly deed, however.
The contrary is the case in Abuja, where those being paraded by the SSS claimed they killed Oyerinde in the course of a robbery gone awry. He was shot, according to one of the robbers, because they thought he had a gun. So, where do we go from here? Since the nation’s security challenges heightened, there had been apprehension as to the communication gap within the security agencies. Nothing confirms this better than the latest development in the Oyerinde murder saga. The arrest made by the police in Benin featured prominently in the news for several days before the SSS paraded their own suspects in Abuja many days later. What would it have cost the SSS to contact the police command in Benin as to its own findings? Is there some rivalry and ego trip going on here? Sadly, what the different arrests have succeeded in doing is to further obfuscate the matter. And this speaks volume of the state of the nation’s security apparatus, which is not reputable for solving high-calibre murders.
In the military era, many prominent Nigerians met their untimely deaths in the hands of assassins. Dele Giwa, frontline journalist, was killed by a parcel bomb. Alfred Rewane, businessman and politician was murdered. In the latter case, the police arrested some people, among who were Rewane’s domestic staff and some aliens. One of the domestic staff was in detention for over a decade before he was released for want of evidence. And since 1999, there had been other cold-blooded murders. Bola Ige, attorney general and minister of justice, was killed in December 2001. Some people were tried for the murder. They were acquitted. If nobody could be found guilty for the murder of a sitting attorney general, it was not surprising therefore that nobody had been found guilty for the murders of two prominent politicians, Harry Marshal and Aminasoari Dikibo. That is why the nests of killers are getting bolder by the day and continue to kill with impunity. Nigerians are watching to see how the two agencies resolve the riddle they have created with their fumbling in the Oyerinde murder saga.