DOWEN COLLEGE: Toxicology report released, late Oromoni’s father refuses to bury son

January 8, 2022
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As the awaited result of toxicology the parties to the alleged murder of Dowen College student Sylvester Oromoni, finally arrived, the bereaved family is crying foul.

Following the death of the 12-year-old at the school in Lekki, Lagos, last year, the state government, police authorities, and families of the suspected students and staffers, agreed to two autopsies, according to the latest update by Lagos CP Hakeem Odumosu.

“During the open interview, it was unanimously agreed that another autopsy should be carried out where pathologists from all parties would be present. Investigation was extended to Delta State and Abuja. I will like to state here that investigation revealed that the same case was reported at the Area Command Warri, Delta State, on December 1, 2021,’ he said on Friday.

“It has also been established that a post mortem examination was initially carried out on December 2, 2021 by a Consultant Pathologist, Dr. Clement Vhriterhire of the Central Hospital, Warri, Delta State. The result of the first autopsy dated December 10, 2021 attributed the cause of death to ‘acute lung injury due to chemical intoxication in a background of blunt force trauma.’

H said toxicology screening was recommended, and carried out.

While waiting for the result of the toxicology, another autopsy was ordered by the Coroner Magistrate in Lagos because of the status of jurisdiction.

“The corpse was, therefore, moved with armed police escorts from Delta State to Lagos State by TOS Funeral and the autopsy conducted at the expense of the Lagos State Government,” he said.

“The second autopsy was carried out at the Lagos state University Teaching Hospital on December 14, 2021 in the presence of representatives of all the parties involved in the case.”

The second autopsy was carried out by the Consultant Pathologist and Chief Examiner, Department of Pathology and Forensic Sciences, LASUTH, Dr. S.S Soyemi, and was witnessed by representatives of all the parties, including Vhriterhire, as well as police officers, among other principal officials.

Odumosu said both autopsies confirmed and toxicology examination conducted at Delta and Lagos states agreed that the deceased died a natural death.

“Before the expiration of the 21 days remand order, the families of the students applied for their bail at the Magistrates’ Court 1 Yaba. The application was approved hence the students who were earlier remanded at Boys Home, Oregun, were granted bail. The house masters were also granted bail after the expiration of the 21 days remand order.

“The result of the second autopsy carried out in Lagos was released on December 21, 2021. The result attributed the cause of death to ‘Septicaemia, lobar pneumonia with acute pyelonephritis and pyomyositis of the right ankle.’

On December 30, 2021, the toxicology screening results of the first autopsy carried out in Warri was released.

“The result issued and signed by Dr Clement Vhriterhire, the same doctor who carried out the initial autopsy, attributed the cause of death to ‘acute bacteria pneumonia due to severe sepsis.’

“At the end of diligent investigation carried out so far, there is no evidence to establish a case of torture, bullying and forceful application of poisonous substance against the suspects,” Odumosu said.

“All the suspects denied the allegations of torture, bullying and administering of poisonous substance to the deceased. Allegation that the deceased was being forced to join a cult group was also not established as other students interviewed denied this.”

But the Oromois have denied these reports.

“Do they have any autopsy report? They don’t have any,” he told the Punch.

“The doctor that did the autopsy in Delta State was recommended by the Area Commander. He is not the family doctor. We don’t know him. Our lawyer applied to the Area Command to get a copy of the autopsy.”

According to him, the soul of his boy is crying round.

“My son will never be buried. If it takes me 30 years to get justice, he would remain there (in the mortuary). He is my son; I won’t bury him. Nigerians should look beyond what they are saying.”

His lawyer Femi Falana also rejected the DPP advice that led to the release of the suspects.

“The report has not laid to rest the allegations surrounding the gruesome murder of Sylvester Oromoni,” he said.

“The report is escapist and hasty as the authorities are aware of the fact that the Chief Coroner of Lagos State has ordered that an inquest be conducted into the circumstances surrounding the unnatural death of Sylvester Oromoni. The inquest, which commenced before the coroner on December 16, 2021, has been adjourned till January 15, 2022 for further hearing.”

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