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Police arrest owner of Lagos shrine over murder of four-year-old girl


                                          The shrine

Owner of the shrine where a kidnapped four-year-old girl was allegedly used as sacrifice in Iwaya, Yaba area of Lagos, three months ago, has been arrested.
 
It would be recalled that the victim, Juliana Taiye, had gone to a mosque with his siblings on July 24, 2017, before she was declared missing. Her body was later around 8:00p.m. of the same day, with the neck slashed, at an Ogun shrine in her parents abode at No. 54, Owoduni Street.
 
Briefing newsmen on his arrest yesterday, the Commissioner of Police, Lagos State Police Command, Edgal Imohimi, said “after an extensive investigation into the incident, one Olalekan Olatise, mastermind of the heinous crime, who resides in Ikorodu, was arrested. He confessed to the crime and also mentioned his sister and one other in connection with the incident. Efforts at arresting the two other fleeing suspects are ongoing. They would all be charged to court at the completion of investigation.”
 
When approached, the 35-year-old suspect admitted to be the custodian of the shrine. He however denied having anything to do with the slain girl.He said:  “I do not have a hand in the killing. On the day in question, I was in a Cherubim and Seraphim church where I had gone for prayers because I was sick. It was when I came home to pick some clothes that I was told what happened.
 
“My father was the custodian of the shrine. After his demise, the oracle chose me as the next custodian. At first, I refused because I was a Christian. I was forced to accept out of fear, because they threatened that I would go mad if I refused.
   
“I have never done sacrifice on the shrine since I took over. Rather, a man named Kazeem has been doing it. Besides, they do not use human beings to sacrifice to the god of Ogun. They use dogs, goats, cola nut and bitter cola for the sacrifice all over.
 
“When the incident happened, I went to Ikorodu to stay. I was initially staying in my mother’s compound where the shrine is before I moved to Ikorodu. I was arrested because I did not show up when the police came.
 
“I am using this opportunity to call on all Ifa priests across the country to come to my aid by consulting the oracle on my behalf  to know who killed the little girl.
   
“I have cried to a traditional ruler in Ikorodu, but he rebuffed me and told me plainly that there was nothing he could do since I was not worshipping the god of the shrine since it was handed over to me.”
   
Asked how it was possible for anyone to access the shrine without his consent, the Ogun state – born suspect said: “ any worshipper could go to the shrine without my knowledge as long as Kazeem who knows how to perform the ties is there.”

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