Parents of Olaide Bournes, who was allegedly killed by her lover, are in agony and they want justice to take its course, writes GBENGA ADENIJI
Tears welled up the eyes of Mrs. Bournes as she welcomed our
correspondent to her Aguda, Ogba residence. There were a few
sympathisers outside the house, who came to comfort the Bournes family.
few days earlier, Bournes had lost her daughter, Olaide, a part-time
business administration student of the Lagos State Polytechnic, who was
allegedly killed by her lover, Abuchi Cyril.
Bournes was too heavy-hearted to talk about her loss, especially as the
continued arrival of sympathisers reinforced the reality of her
22-year-old daughter’s demise.
Although there was nothing to
suggest that she was walking to her death on the day she died, Olaide
was reluctant to leave home, repeating the same house chore several
times and taking a long time to dress up. She had planned to see her
alleged killer, Abuchi, in his house and later head for a branch of an
old generation bank to open an account in which her first salary would
She worked as a contract staff with a popular
confectionery firm in Ikeja, Lagos State and she was expected to resume
by 3pm on that fateful day.
Mrs. Bournes described her late
daughter as a very quiet and peace-loving person whose death has created
a big vacuum in the family.
She said, “She was always eager to
assist others. Olaide hated argument or anything that will lead to a
fight and she was never happy seeing people exchanging words. The day
she died, we were together talking outside the house because I was
waiting for the sanitation exercise to end so that I could display my
wares. I am a trader and we observe sanitation every Thursday. Later,
she went inside to get dressed and her phone rang. I had her phone with
me so I rushed inside to give it to her. She told me it was Abuchi who
was calling and that she wanted to see him before going to work. She
said Abuchi was leaving for Malaysia during the week and had asked her
to come so that they could celebrate before his departure.”
added that before the deceased left home that day, she told her she
would go to the bank to open an account where her first salary would be
“She started working with the confectionary company on
January 28 and was yet to get her first salary. They were told to
provide their account details and many of her colleagues who had done so
had been paid. She filled the form a day before the incident,” Bournes
stated amidst tears.
But expectation of joy turned sorrow when, a
few hours after her daughter left home, Mrs. Bournes noted changes in
the way people were relating with her. She later learnt that Olaide was
rushed to a nearby hospital where she died after she was allegedly
beaten by Abuchi.
It was not the first time Olaide’s boyfriend
had abused her. Mrs. Bournes confirmed that there were times when her
daughter would return home sullen after visiting Abuchi. She recalled
that she met Abuchi for the first time at a hospital where her daughter
had gone to receive treatment for malaria.
“I asked my daughter
who he was and she told me he was her friend. I remember that he sat
looking as I questioned my daughter about his identity. Olaide used to
tell me that the guy was fond of beating her and I warned her to be
careful and desist from seeing him. But she would reply that they had
settled whatever the problem was.”
Our correspondent gathered
that the deceased and Abuchi had been dating for over three years before
the final fatal meeting. It was also learnt that Abuchi, who lives
close to the deceased’s house with his parents, often accused the late
Olaide of cheating on him.
Abuchi, said to be popular in the
area, was alleged to have beaten Olaide during an argument after which
she hit her head against the ground in the suspect’s room and became
unconscious. The suspect later went to the Area G Police Command to hand
himself over to the police. He was subsequently detained.
deceased’s father, Akindele Bournes, who was visibly distressed as he
spoke to our correspondent, said he was shocked to learn that Abuchi
attends the same church with him.
He stated, “I never knew that
the suspect attends the same church with my family. At the close of
service every Sunday, he would call my late daughter to tell her that he
sat beside me in the church. I know that my daughter has been killed
but the manner of her death was painful. I cannot believe that I have
lost my girl. She was a source of joy to me. I want justice to be done.
When I was at the Area G Police Command and the suspect was brought out
for me to see. I was shocked when he said he knew me in the church.”
elder sister, Olabisi, said she would miss everything about her late
younger sister. “I miss everything about my sister. Is it her smiles,
jokes, beauty, gentle nature or caring attitude that I will forget? We
did everything together being the only two around since our other
sibling is not in Nigeria. She would joke about my choice of clothes and
tell me what to put on and what not to. I would then tease her by
saying ‘big girl.’ Her hearty smile to my taunt often made me laugh
happily. I cannot believe she was gone forever,’’ she state.
late Olaide’s friends in school, who paid the family a visit, were
unable to hold back their tears. President of the institution’s
students’ union, Mr. Udechukwu Ifeanyichukwu, said his first encounter
with the late Olaide was in 2012 when she mistakenly stepped on him on
He said, “I told her she stepped on me and her
response was so awesome. I didn’t forget the episode because I was moved
by her apologies which was warm and courteous.
“Since then, I
took notice of her and got to know that she was a very nice person. She
was quiet and friendly. It is so painful that such a lady so full of
hopes and promises could die so cruelly,” said Ifeanyichukwu.
contacted on the telephone, the Deputy Police Public Relations
Officers, Lagos State Police Command, Damascus Ozoani, said the case had
been transferred to the State Criminal Investigation Department, Yaba,
He said, ‘‘The suspect has been moved to the State CID where further investigation is currently ongoing on the case.’’