- How MBT Balogun, Shakiru Balogun aka SAB & Emmanuel Onwa died
By Okunade Adekunle
The Local government election held on Saturday, July 22 in Lagos State may have come and gone. Despite the acrimony that accompanied the All Progressives Congress (APC) primaries in some areas including a court case that tried to cast aspersion on the process in Odi-Olowo Local Council Development Area, the governing APC cleared the entire chairmanship of the 20 LGs and 37 LCDAs in the state.
There was tension in the build-up to the election, but the election was devoid of violence, peaceful, free and fair but marked by unprecedented apathy.
One thing that sticks out, however, is the three strange deaths recorded in the build up to the election.
Fallen when they were needed most were the party chairman in Itire/Ikate LCDA, Alhaji MBT Balogun; former chairmanship aspirant in Ikotun/Igando LCDA and a former Chairman, National Union of Local Government Employees, Mr. Shakiru Balogun; and Igbo businessman and APC chieftain in Amuwo-Odofin LCDA, Mr. Emmanuel Onwa.
Late Shakiru Balogun
Though the first two deaths could be said to be natural. That of Onwa is said to be politically-motivated but the police said they were still investigating the murder and were not ruling out any motive whatsoever.
MBT Balogun had slumped and died on the night of the poll in his Itire/Ikate area residence. He died around the midnight of that day.
The Chairman of APC Election Committee, Senator Tokunboh Afikuyomi, who broke the news of the demise on a WhatsApp post on his phone, said he died while preparing for the LG election.
The way and manner Shakiru Balogun aka SAB died is, however, dismaying. He was crushed to death.
He failed to clinch the party’s ticket at the primaries for local government elections in the state. Balogun was going to the council secretariat around 12 pm on Friday, election eve, when the driver of the PSP truck lost control of the truck and rammed it into Balogun’s Toyota 4-runner at Okofili Bus Stop, LASU-Isheri Road.
52-year-old Balogun died on the spot while the PSP driver reportedly fled the scene.
Eyewitnesses said the door of the Sports Utility Vehicle had to be cut with a saw before emergency officials could extricate his body.
He is survived two wives and four children and has been buried according to Islamic rite.
But Onwa, said to be a major sponsor of the party in Amuwo-Odofin, was killed on Friday night around FESTAC area.
He was said to have been lured out of his house by some people who called him for a meeting. Onwa was said to have been shot twice at a close in his vehicle. He died on the spot.
Onwa had led the agitation for a chairmanship candidate against the now-elected chairman, who is from the group led by former Chairman of Amuwo-Odofin, Mr. Ayodele Adewale.
When that failed, Onwa led a group of some aggrieved leaders of the party opposed to some councillorship aspirants in the area, presented by Adewale’s group, to the Bourdillion residence of Asiwaju Bola Tinubu for their group to be carried along in the build-up to the poll in Amuwo-Odofin.
The group did not get much until the election came.