The 18-year old teenager who set a family of five ablaze in Abuja and eventually surrendered himself to the police, says he is restless as memories of the people he killed were haunting him.
It had been reported by the Punch that the teenager, Oluwaseyi Babatola, killed his parent’s landlady, her daughter and three grandchildren at Tudun-Fulani, in the Bwari area of the Federal Capital Territory, FCT, last weekend.
Babatola, who works as a mobile phone technician, was said to have locked the deceased in their apartment after they had slept in the night, sprayed the house with petrol and set it ablaze.
He watched as the fire gutted the building and when he was sure that the victims were trapped, he reportedly headed for the Bwari Police Division.
According to reports, prior to the incident, the teenager had an unsettled disagreement with the landlady and her family members and he had reportedly threatened to deal with them.
Also, there had been an alleged mutual relationship between the landlady’s daughter and Sunday, which broke up recently.
The embattled teenager, who was also injured during the inferno caused by him, has opened up, following alleged torture from “the spirits of the dead.”
After he reported himself to the police after committing the crime, he was detained by the FCT Special Anti-Robbery Squad.
The victims, according to the mobile phone technician, were Janet Isuawa; her sons, Samuel and Osaze; her cousin, Taphael; and Janet’s mother.
He noted that he had wanted to commit suicide after setting the family on fire, but was dissuaded by his younger brother, James, who asked him to report the incident to the police.
Explaining what led to the tragedy, the suspect said he started dating Janet, a divorcee, sometime ago, adding that he supported her and the children financially.
According to him, the relationship developed problems after he demanded sex, noting that each time he asked for sex, Janet would turn him down and taunt him.
Babatola said matters came to a head on April 12 when Janet informed him that his mother had told her that he suffered from hernia and therefore could not date him.
He said, “Janet said my mother told her that I suffer from hernia, and that she could not date me; she called me a ‘mugu’ (fool), and said she had chopped my money. So, I went to where she was charging the phone I bought for her and took it.
“She attacked me and bit my chest, and as I struggled to free myself from her grip, her cousin, Taphael, came in and pushed me down and held me there while she beat me with her fists.
“After I left the house, Janet’s younger sister called me on the telephone and abused me, saying they would deal with me if I come to the house again,” Babatola added.
“On the night of April 15, around 11pm, I went to the house and found that the gate was locked. I scaled the fence into the compound. I went towards Janet’s room and saw her sleeping, as the window was opened because there was no power supply.
“I went to the bathroom, where she kept a gallon of fuel and poured it into the room through the window; the room caught fire from a lighted lantern. I headed for the bush to hang myself, but my phone suddenly rang and my brother told me that our house just got burnt; I told him I did it and that I was about to commit suicide.
“He said I should not, and persuaded me to report to the police,” Babatola added.
“Every night, I remember how I used to relate with Janet’s two sons; I have not been able to erase their memories from my mind; I can’t get them off my mind, they haunt me every time.
“I thought it was only Janet that was in the room, I didn’t know the children were there. I thought they had gone for a vigil with their grandmother who attended vigil every Thursday.
“I did not know that I had killed all the family members, until I saw their charred corpses the next morning,” he added.
The FCT Police Public Relations Officer, ASP Anjuguri Manzah, who had earlier confirmed the incident, noted that the commissioner of police, FCT, directed that the suspect be transferred to the Criminal Investigation and Intelligence Department for further investigation.
The PPRO said the suspect would be charged to court upon the completion of the investigation.