KUNLE FALAYI | Punch
She is 30 years old but that did not stop her secret love affair with 78-year-old politician, Adedayo Deru. But on September 30, 2014, it all ended – with the man collapsing on his lover’s chest and dying on the spot.
In a case that has underscored the thin line between pleasure and pain, Deru went from a steamy sexual session on his lover’s bed to a roadside where his corpse was dumped after his death.
The woman in the eye of the storm, Ijimo Ibrahim, a hairdresser, was still finding it difficult to explain her situation to police investigators at the Department of Criminal Investigation of the Ogun State Police Command, Eleweran, Abeokuta, when our correspondent visited on Wednesday. The police wanted to know how her lover died and how his body got to a roadside in the dead of the night.
Ibrahim, who was never married, has two children with two other men. Sitting on the floor with agony etched on her face, Ibrahim narrated how her lover, who was married to another woman, died.
“He only came for sex in the mornings so that his wife would not suspect,” the fair complexioned woman said, as her face revealed that she would prefer not to relive the sordid details of the affair.
The late Deru and Ibrahim met six years ago in Odogbolu, the suspect told our correspondent.
“There was a day I was with him. We had sex but the wife caught us. So, I had to leave the town shortly after. I went to Lagos to work as an apprentice hairdresser,” she said.
According to Ibrahim, after her apprenticeship and a love affair in Lagos that resulted in a child, she was back in Odogbolu, where another love affair resulted in another child.
“None of the fathers of my children were good. They never took care of me or the children. I turned to the only person who has been really helpful to me. My lover (Deru) was a good man. He helped me anytime I called on him.
“When we reconnected after I got back from Lagos, we continued our love affair secretly because he was always there when I needed help.”
Asked what sort of help Deru rendered, Ibrahim said he sometimes gave her foodstuffs or money for food, which she said was up to N1,000 on each occasion.
So, she and Deru enjoyed a sexual experience that endured until their final encounter, which has put her in police net as a murder suspect.
She said, “He came as usual on September 30 around 9am. I was on my way out of the house; I was going to work already that day. But he met me as I got out of the door and said he was visiting me.
“I told him I could spare some hours before I left for work, so I went back inside with him. As soon as we got in, he stripped and I did the same. It was just one round of sex that we had and I don’t know why that could have killed him.
“Our lovemaking was not even that long. He started complaining that he was not feeling fine. He said he was feeling tired and dizzy. Shortly after, he collapsed and stopped breathing.”
When Deru became unresponsive, Ibrahim said she became frightened.
Confused about what to do next, she dialled the telephone number of a male relation, explaining what had happened.
“My brother (the relation) told me to calm down, promising to come to my aid later that afternoon so that we could decide on what to do. But when I did not see him by evening, I realised he had run away and switched off his mobile telephone in fear,” she said.
Ibrahim had to turn to another acquaintance who eventually agreed to help her dispose of the body.
“We thought if I reported to the police, I would be in serious trouble. I didn’t know I was making a terrible decision.”
It was around 3am the following day when Ibrahim disposed of Deru’s body with the help of a commercial motorcycle rider living in her house.
The motorcyclist, Benjamin Friday, who tried his best to present his version of the events that led to his involvement in disposing of the body, said he had no idea that Deru was already dead.
“When they woke me up to help them carry a body, I was told it was her (Ibrahim’s) elderly relation. I was really sleepy, they only told me he was ill and they wanted to dump his body on a roadside so that he would not die in her house,” he said.
Asked how he could possibly help carry a body and would not know whether it was that of a dead man, Friday said he was sleepy at the time.
“I told them I would not touch the man’s body. Someone sat behind me supporting the man’s body. I only drove them to the roadside. They put the body down and I left.”
Also in police custody was a photographer friend of Ibrahim, Funmilayo Moyegun, who said she was only requested to be there “to take his (Deru’s) photograph.”
“I only held the lamp when the body was being dumped,” she said.
Deru’s body was said to have been dumped about 100 metres away from his lover’s house on Oladipo Diya Road, Odogbolu.
The police were called to the scene when the body was found by residents of the area.
Police Public Relations Officer in the state, Mr. Muyiwa Adejobi, said after a thorough police investigation, the body was eventually traced to Ibrahim.
According to him, investigation would continue into the matter.
“We would determine how the man died and whether her version of the story correlates with the circumstances of the death,” Adejobi said.
He revealed that an autopsy would help the police determine the level of culpability of the prime suspect.