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Mobitel boss DEATH • SAN award on hold• Everyone is a suspect

Posted by By JOE OMOKARO & SOLA FANAWOPO on 2005/09/18 | Views: 1278 |

Mobitel boss DEATH • SAN award on hold• Everyone is a suspect


Forty-eight hours after the mysterious death of Mobitel president, Engr. Charles Joseph, the police in Lagos yesterday arrested all the suspects including the receiver/manager, Mr Oluwakemi Pinhero.

Forty-eight hours after the mysterious death of Mobitel president, Engr. Charles Joseph, the police in Lagos yesterday arrested all the suspects including the receiver/manager, Mr Oluwakemi Pinhero.


Lagos State Commissioner of Police, Mr Ade Ajakaiye, who confirmed their arrest, said that “all the receivers and policemen involved in the mission have been arrested, pending the outcome of the autopsy and our investigations.”


Asked the identities of those arrested, Ajakaiye said “in this situation, everyone is a suspect until we conclude our investigations.”


However, unconfirmed report last night said that Pinhero, a lawyer, who is billed to be admitted tomorrow into the privileged class of Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), was later released on “orders from above.”


Undeterred, the Joseph family in Lagos threatened to storm the Supreme Court, Abuja, tomorrow to pressure the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) to expunge the name of Oluwakemi Adekunle Pinhero from the list of lawyers to be elevated to SAN.


A member of the Joseph family, Mr. Femi Olude, told Sunday Sun in Lagos that the decision was their first step towards registering their resentment of the alleged involvement of Pinheiro, the lawyer appointed by Intercontinental Bank as a receiver/manager of Mobitel, in the series of incidents that culminated in the death of the telecom boss.


Yesterday, several calls made to Pinhero’s cell phone were without response.
While the family was putting finishing touches to the protest march, a source at the Lagos State University Teaching Hospital, Ikeja, said that the anatomists might have found out how the late Joseph died.
Said he: “A hole was found at the back of his head, from where the bullet probably penetrated before exiting somewhere near his right eye. This finding can only suggest that he was shot at close range from behind,” he concluded.


Engr. Joseph was found dead Thursday morning in a pool of his own blood shortly after Kemi Pinhero, the Receiver Manager appointed by a bank to take over Mobitel Nigeria Limited left the office, accompanied by armed policemen.


Reports immediately following his death suggested that Joseph committed suicide. But Folashade had said that doctors’ preliminary autopsy investigation showed a perfect hole of about one centimeter that resembled a bullet hole was found on the corner of Joseph’s eye.


Looking downcast and fagged out, Folashade said Friday that she had to break the custom of mourning period to challenge the crude characterization of her husband as a violent man.


Her words: "They say our Alaba killed himself. Well, we ask you to hold your opinion until the investigations are completed. Perhaps we might then learn how a perfect hole of one centimeter that resembles a bullet hole came to appear on the corner of Alaba’s right eye.


"How a man who is alleged to have jumped to his death came to lie in a position that is totally at variance with any idea of a jump or any other action taken with free will.
"And why Kemi Pinheiro and his armed companions had to flee and leave my husband to die in a pool of his blood."


According to her, the theory that her husband killed himself over Mobitel’s debt to a commercial bank is ludicrous: "He was working hard to reschedule the debt, and had revealed an advanced stage of negotiation with the bank." She also said that the bank chose to appoint a Receiver Manager did not surprise Joseph: "What he had not anticipated, and could not have anticipated, was the speed and ferocity with which Kemi Pinheiro sought to take physical control of a company that he (Pinheiro) did not build."


Folasade also said that her husband left their VGC home in good spirit and therefore had no reason to run or jump. "The problem Mobitel had with the bank was not his personal problem, it was a corporate problem and even to look at it critically, the company’s asset alone can offset the debt."
In his own remarks, Prof. Fred Adegoke, head of Joseph family declared that the family would not leave any stone unturned to get to the bottom of the issue.


Earlier, the family head had lamented the statement credited to Lagos Police Command that Charles Joseph committed suicide. His words: "It is unbelievable that Lagos State Commissioner of Police made such statement when autopsy had not even been conducted on the deceased."
In a related development, the Association of Telecommunications Companies of Nigeria (ATCON) called on the Presidency and Minister of Communications, Chief Cornelius Adebayo to order a swift investigation into the death of their president.


"We urge that a judicial body of inquiry be empanelled to unravel the roles played by the bank and Pinheiro and the Nigerian police," the body said in a statement jointly signed by its first Vice President, Engr. Yahaya; Secretary, Kola Olayebi-Edward and Executive secretary, Abieyuwa Igbinoua.

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Comments (3)

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Abieyuwa(Edo, Nigeria)says...

Otasowie means evening life is better than morning life. There is an error in your “evening life is better than evening life”?

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Naija g(Houston, Minnesota, US)says...

Sokari doesn’t mean joy. Joy is Biobela. Go to the village and ask the meaning of the name.

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Fay(Katy, Texas, US)says...

Actually translates to bravehearted.