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Wednesday, 24 July 2019

Mr and Mrs Dakolo: IG orders case transfer to Lagos

The Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Adamu, has ordered that petitions from the Senior Pastor of the Commonwealth of Zion Assembly in Abuja, Biodun Fatoyinbo, and Mr and Mrs Timi Dakolo, be merged and investigated at the Force Criminal Investigation and Intelligence Department, Alagbon, Ikoyi, Lagos.

Lawyer to the Dakolos, Mr Femi Falana, made the disclosure during a telephone interview with The PUNCH on Monday.

Falana, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, told our correspondent that the IG assured him that justice would be done in the matter.

Busola, wife of the popular artiste, Timi Dakolo, had alleged that Fatoyinbo raped her twice while she was a member of his church.

 The allegation generated mixed reactions from Nigerians on the social media, with many calling for an investigation into the case.

 Fatoyinbo, who had since denied the allegation, threatened a lawsuit.

 After much public outcry, including a protest march, Fatoyinbo announced to his church that he had decided to take a leave of absence over the matter.

 The matter, however, took a dramatic twist on Saturday when Timi raised the alarm on his Instagram page that some strange men invaded his house with guns.

 He also posted copies of police invitation letters to his family, lamenting that the police, while intimidating his wife and children, refused to invite Fatoyinbo for questioning.

 Again, the development provoked different reactions, compelling the Force Public Relations Officer, Frank Mba, to issue a statement.

In the statement, he explained that the police invitation was not a warrant of arrest, adding that the Force would be professional in handling the case.

Falana told The PUNCH on Monday that he spoke with the IG over the matter.

 “The IG has ordered that the petition of the Dakolos and that of Pastor Fatoyinbo be consolidated. He has further directed that both petitions be investigated at the Force CID, Alagbon, Lagos since the Dakolos’ petition was first submitted in Lagos,” he said.

The Force spokesman, Mba, could not be reached to confirm or deny the development.

Meanwhile, the Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Adamu, has ordered the Deputy Inspector-General of Police in charge of the Force Criminal Investigation Department, Michael Ogbizi, to take over the ongoing investigation.

By this directive, the investigation will start afresh.

The Force Public Relations Officer, Frank Mba, explained in a statement in Abuja on Monday that the development would ensure “a speedy, thorough, fair and impartial investigation into the case of rape reported by Mrs Dakolo against Fatoyinbo.”

It said the DIG was also expected to take over the investigation of the complaint made by Fatoyinbo against the Dakolos in addition to providing a personal supervision to all facets of the investigation to ensure justice and fair hearing to all the parties, with each case being treated purely on its merit.

Our correspondent learnt that the police had in a letter dated July 2 invited Fatoyinbo for questioning, but miffed by the slow pace of investigation, the IG directed Ogbizi to take over the case.

“By the IG’s directive, the officer handling the investigation is expected to hand over the case file to the DIG who would start the investigation de novo (afresh). This means that the earlier invitation sent to the couple, Timi and Bukola Dakolo, is now inconsequential and should be disregarded,” a police source explained.

Meanwhile, the IG has directed that the procedure which police operatives adopted in serving the invitation letter on the Dakolos on Saturday should be subjected to rigorous and discreet scrutiny to ascertain whether it conformed to the police standard operating procedure and international best practices.

The letter signed by Deputy Commissioner of Police, IGP Special Tactical Squad Force Headquarters, Kolo Yusuf, had directed the couple to report for interrogation on July 23 by 10am.


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