Valentine party turns bloody, APC leader killed

Feb. 15, 2014

A stray bullet killed a Kwara politician.

Tragedy struck on Friday night in Oro, Kwara State, as a stray police bullet killed a 35-year-old politician during a party to celebrate St. Valentine’s Day.

The party held at the Topmost Hotel, Oro, in Irepodun Local Government Area.

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the All Progressives Congress, APC, stalwart, Femi Oladipo, died instantly from the bullet wound.

Mr. Oladipo was a former chairmanship aspirant under the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, in the November 2013 local government election in the state before defecting to APC.

The death of Mr. Oladipo has triggered a protest in the town with some anti-riot policemen and soldiers drafted to the scene on Saturday.

A witness said, on condition of anonymity, that a stray bullet from one of two policemen providing security at the hotel hit Mr. Oladipo’s chest at 11:45 p.m.

He said that Mr. Oladipo was mediating in a minor disagreement among some youth when the incident occurred.

The source said the police officer hit the butt of his gun against a wall when it discharged a bullet and hit Mr. Oladipo.

“Oladipo was calming down the youth who were engaged in a minor disagreement when the policeman hit the gun,” the source said.

Two policemen were detailed to the hotel to provide security for some members of a church holding a crusade.

The members had earlier obtained a police permit.

It was in the same hotel that some youth, including the deceased, were having a Valentine party.

The deceased recently returned from the U.S.

The spokesperson for the Kwara State Police Command, Ajayi Okasanmi, confirmed the incident, saying that the affected police officer was already undergoing an interrogation at the command’s headquarters in Ilorin.

“It was true a police officer’s gun was accidentally discharged and killed a man at the hotel where he was to provide security.

“The officer affected has been arrested and currently undergoing police orderly interrogation at the Kwara State Police headquarters, Ilorin,” Mr. Okasanmi said.

The chairman of the local government council, Luqman Owolewa, described the incident as ‘very unfortunate.’

He said that the council was doing everything possible to calm the aggrieved youth.

The body of the deceased has since been deposited at the mortuary.