MohBad: How Nigeria Police Bungled Singer’s Petition, Desperate Plea for LifeLine
When the late Nigerian singer, Ilerioluwa Oladimeji Aloba, popularly known as Mohbad, wrote a petition to the Nigeria Police Force reporting multiple threats to his life from controversial socialite, Samson Balogun, aka Samlarry, amongst others on the orders of his former label boss, Naira Marley, he was summoned by the police to come and defend a counter-petition from his alleged abusers and traducers.
The Ikorodu Lagos born fast rising singer and rapper fondly known as Imole, best known for his hit singles like Beast and Peace, “Ponmo, Feel Good”, and “KPK (Ko Por Ke)” was fast emerging as a delightful addition to the galaxy of stars making Lagos and Nigeria proud in entertainment industry, with melodious afro songs rocking the airways.
Many of his recent hit street anthems were curiously laced with themes of premonition and death but many fans and listeners had taken it as merely artistic, oblivious of his quiet anguish and desperate plea for a life line.
Close friends including bella Shmurda and his wife wunmi reportedly said he lived his last months in trepidation, haunted by assailants and bullies. His offense was his call for a better handling at Marlian record which landed in trouble leading to his exit and harrowing experience.
He was said to have attempted relocating his family abroad to mitigate his dreaded loss in the war he fought with his assailants who made his life hard till he breathed his last.
MohBad later died under unclear circumstances last week Tuesday and was hurriedly buried in Ikorodu, sparking public outrage in Nigeria especially among youths who insisted bullies and assailants loyal to Naira Marley and his associate, Sam Larry, played a part, possibly poisoning him.
This was fuelled by viral videos which showed the late musical act been victimized and assaulted on multiple occasions. Youths have also vowed to get him justice, a call that has ignited protests across states in South Western part of the nation.
Regardless of who killed him, MohBad had desperately called for help but couldn’t get. Few friends had rallied round to assist but couldn’t just save him as he contended with a great force.
Many celebrities and entertainers have joined the call for justice for the late singer with thousands already unfollowing social media handles of suspects, indicating withdrawal of support. Radio stations, show promoters and other entertainment influencers are also banning Naira Marley and his Marlian record songs.
Youths on social media believe Imole’s death was also caused by the inability of Nigeria police to protect him.
This view dominates many comments on X (former Twitter).
Similarly, in a document which recently surfaced online, MohBad on June 27, 2023, had filed a petition captioned “Petition of threat to life, malicious damage of properties valued the sum of five-million-naira, assault occasioning harm, oppression and conduct likely to cause breach of peace” against Samlarry and Oba Elegushi of Eti-Osa, Lagos State.
The late 27-year-old fast-rising singer in the petition addressed to the office of the Assistant Inspector General of Police, Force CID Annex, Alagbon, also alleged the malicious damage of his properties valued at N5 million, assault causing harm, oppression and conduct likely to cause a breach of peace by Samlarry Elegushi and others including Elele and Obele.
Mohbad in the petition said that on June 25, 2023 – while having a video shoot with another music artist, Zlatan Ibile – the above-mentioned persons numbering about 15 led by Samlarry Elegushi invaded the premises with dangerous arms, including guns and cutlasses, amongst others and disrupted the shooting.
He further said that the alleged attackers “damaged the equipment I was using for the shooting valued about Five Million Naira and started threatening my life which in the process they became violent and assaulted me which I sustained injuries but narrowly escaped.
“Total amount I paid for the shooting they have destroyed is Eight Million Naira (N8,000,000) which is non-refundable.
“However, during the assault, they were boasting that they work for Oba Elegushi and that they have been asked to deal with me for reasons best known to them which till date they are still threatening to kill me if seen.
“Sir, I call on your good office to save my life from the above-mentioned persons and bring them to book.”
However, the police ignored the petition and following the controversy that trailed the revelation of the petition after Mohbad’s death, the police said they could not act on the petition because “he never showed up, and there was nothing the police could do if a petitioner refused to defend their petition.”
The police said they invited Samlarry and others, following the receipt of the June 27 petition by Mohbad, over alleged threat to life, and assault, amongst others.
The federal police department further noted that a lawyer representing Samlarry and the other suspects wrote a counter-petition against Mohbad, alleging defamation of character and that the singer failed to show up to defend his case.
Meanwhile, a human rights activist and convener of #RevolutionNow, Omoyele Sowore, has berated the Nigeria Police Force for allegedly compromising the petition on the threat to the life of Mohbad, submitted in June.
As the controversy surrounding Mohbad’s death continues to escalate amid a police investigation into the cause of his death, Sowore on Monday lambasted the police authorities, saying that they bungled Mohbad’s petition while he sought their protection.
He said instead of protecting Mohbad, the police accepted a counter-petition from his traducers, accusing him of “defamation of character”. He said the police then turned around and asked him to defend the counter-petition put in by his traducers, totally ignoring the allegations of threat to life made by Mohbad in his petition.
“Had the Nigeria Police treated a petition by Mohbad against his traducers in June 2023, he’d probably still be alive today. But what did they do? (which most people didn’t pay attention to) they invited his traducers to put in a counter petition accusing Mohbad of “Defamation of Character,” hence he decided to abandon his petition altogether,” Sowore said.
Sowore noted that it has always been the norm with the Nigerian police to compromise public safety, adding that the security agency is known for prosecutorial misconduct carried out by its legal departments across Nigeria.
“These legal misconducts have sent many Nigerians into untimely deaths, crippled finances of innocent persons and congested prisons with the highest number of awaiting trial inmates,” he said.
According to him, the same legal and prosecutorial misconduct by the police is why the Kwara state traditional religion activist, Abdulazeez Adegbola popularly called ‘Tani Olohun’ is currently in jail and has been denied bail even when his case is bailable.
Sowore noted that Tani Olohun’s problem started “when the police force sided with his traducers,” adding that “today his bullies are happy because they have a compromised police force on their side. And the worst thing is that the police hierarchy still don’t get it, not even after #EndSARS!”
“Today in Ilorin, Kwara, a police prosecutor sent an innocent religious freedom activist, Tani Olohun back to prison over a bailable offence of “Defamation of Character” (assuming there is an offence) because your prosecutor opposed his bail, claiming he had no traceable address.
“There is just too much injustice by the Nigeria police misconduct. People are hurting all over the place due to all variants of police misconduct,” he added.
(Report includes quotes from Sahara Reporters)