Prof. Olukayode Ogunsanwo of Forest Products Utilisation, University of Ibadan (UI), has described the death of his friend, Prof. Opeyemi Ajewole, as an irreplaceable one, considering his loving nature toward all.
Ogunsanwo recounted his last moments with his best friend, Ajewole, also a lecturer in the same university, in an interview on Wednesday in Ibadan.
Ajewole was killed on Monday evening by yet to be identified gunmen.
Until his death, Ajewole, aged 61, was a lecturer at the Department of Social and Environmental Forestry at the university.
Friends, staff members as well students, who accompanied Ogunsanwo, to the office of the deceased at the Department of Social and Environmental Forestry to pick one of his pictures for condolence register, were wailing and weeping uncontrollably .
Sympathizers were seen in pensive mood at the deceased’s Department and his house, as people were trooping in to mourn and testify of his good nature and lovely demeanors.
Ogunsanwo recounted that they were both at the UI Staff Club until the deceased was ready to go home around 7.30 p.m, on the unfortunate day, saying that they could not leave together because he had a visitor from Cameroon.
“When we departed, Ope went to the Department and helped to switch off my air conditioner, closed my office windows and locked the door.
“He told me not to bother coming back to the office that he had helped me closed for the day,” he said.
He said that he was called around some minutes to 8.00 p.m that his friend had been shot and kidnapped. “I then alerted the Oyo State Security, who swung into action immediately.
“I rushed to his house and met a relative who helped in buying his car, coming back with his family.
“He called me aside and informed me that the police have found his body.
“He said he saw his picture and confirmed to the police that he was the one they were looking for and that he was dead by then.
“Ope was shot twice, the first shot was when he was abducted in front of his house and the second time was while he was being dragged into his car.
“The traces of blood in front of his house was enough to have killed him, but he was shot a second time and was dropped by the roadside.
“When I saw his corpse at Adeoyo, where the police took him to, he was soaked in blood from head to the toe,” Ogunsanwo said.
He said that Ajewole’s killers went away with his Toyota Camry Car, which has not been found.
“I had to call his pastor and some other professors from UI at about 11.00 p.m to break the news of his death to his wife and children.
“This is because they were told at the police station to go home and bring the original of his car’s papers, as police did not want to break the news there,” he said.
Ogunsanwo described the deceased as an easy-going, kind-hearted and warm person who does not lust for the things of the world, but always cheers people on, admonishing them to take things easy.
According to him, his death was not because he was in any shady business or had dealt with someone.
Meanwhile, Rev. Kayode Oluleye, on behalf of his family, said that further details on the burial arrangement would be announced later by the family.
“With surrendered heart to God, we announce the passing to glory of Prof. Opeyemi Ajewole.
He was born on March 6, 1962 and died on June 5, 2023,” Oluleye