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Oromoni: Ijaw Youth Congress engages senior lawyer to seek justice

A new twist was on Thursday added to the to the issues surrounding the death of 12 year old Sylvester Oromoni, a student of Dowen College, Lekki Lagos, as the Ijaw Youth Congress retain the services of Chief Anthony George-Ikoli SAN to represent the congress in all legal matters concerning the unfortunate death of the young student.

Chief George-Ikoli is the first Senior Advocate, and former Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice of Bayelsa State.

In a letter dated January 12, 2022, the senior lawyer is to “ensure justice is done and seen to be done in the case arising from the death of the late Sylvester Oromoni(age 12) by ensuring that the full circumstances of his death and the remote and proximate causes thereof are made public; and that the perpetrators of the physical assault on late Sylvester Oromoni (which presumably led to his death) are brought to book”.

The late Oromoni died on November 30, 2021 at a private hospital in Warri, Delta State after his parents took him from Dowen College for treatment. It was alleged that the 12 year old boy died due to bullying from fellow students of the school.  Five students were subsequently suspected to have beaten him. The suspects included five students- Kenneth Inyang (15 years), Ansel Temile (14 years), Edward Begue (16 years), Michael Kashamu (15 years) and Benjamin Ikechukwu (16 years). Five members of  staff of the school were accused of the negligence act causing harm to the deceased. They include Celena Uduak, Valentine Igbokweze, Hammed Bariyu, Adesanya Olusesan and another who was simply identified as Mr Adeyemi, and the school itself.

However in a twist which soon became controversial, Lagos State Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) in an advice exonerated the suspects, claiming that there was no prima facie evidence showing that the late Oromoni was killed.

The DPP relied on autopsy reports conducted in Lagos which stated that the deceased died of natural causes. Later the autopsy conducted in Warri, Delta State where the deceased died was released and it contravened the Lagos report. 

This led to a lot of uproar as the Lagos government was accused of trying to shield the suspects from justice.

On January 6, 2022, members of IYC led by comrade Henry Oyobolo protested at the gate of Dowen College, calling for justice for the deceased. The protesters, including masquerades, carried placards, calling for justice for the deceased.

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