Posted by Mojisola Lawal
Regardless of the recent news from the Lagos state government clearing the five accused Dowen students and five staff of complicity in the death of the school’s pupil, Sylvester Oromoni jnr. on Wednesday having dissected the two autopsies, I honestly still feel that there are some questions left unanswered which are necessary for the dispensation of the justice we all clamour for.
I, however, with a sobered heart commiserate with the family of the Oromoni who lost their precious son to wounds ALLEGEDLY suffered from a violent beat-up by school bullies. It is saddening that the boy who must have been preoccupied with a bigger picture of what he would have loved to become in future died untimely on Tuesday, November 30th.
May the Almighty God comfort the family and grant them the fortitude to bear the loss and most importantly makes the deceased rest In peace.
My condolences also go to the school management because the boy could have become a great alumnus of the College in his desired field and carry about the undiluted aura of the College.
I must also at the same time appreciate all the well-meaning Nigerians- the youths, leaders and activists who lent their voices through various means such as whatsapp, Facebook, instagram and other social media outlets demanding justice for the young lad.
I recall vividly that The Rotary Club of Lagos President, Mr. Wale Agbeyangi, as a modicum of respect and recognition of the monumental contribution of the College to the existence of the Club and its other philanthropic activities, swing into action by announcing the postponement of the President’s Dinner earlier planned for the night for the purpose of mourning the 12-year-old boy who could have become the shining star of the College. I thank you for being humane.
Like I said earlier, these unanswered questions are few but germane in order not to pervert the much-talked about justice for the young lad.
First, as at the time the deceased’s guardian came to pick him from school in his condition, why didn’t he take him to the College’s approved hospital because I learnt that the school uses one of the best children hospital in Lekki called Lifeline Children Hospital?
Second, Dowen College in its press release, said the late Sylvester’s guardian took him (Sylvester) for an X-ray and informed the management of the school that the result of the X-ray revealed that no part of his body was broken or injured. Where did the severe body pain that late Sylvester suffered before his death come from? What is the name of the medical outfit that conducted the X-ray on Sylvester? Where is the hospital?
Third, It was gathered that the guardian took the late Chidalu to Warri by road where they spent eight hours or more in the condition the boy was instead of flying him to the destination?
Okay, which hospital did the family take the boy to on arriving warri after the long tortuous journey from Lagos since he was in a great pain? If they indeed took him to the hospital, what were the medications given to him at the said hospital?
Investigations launched into the situation showed that the late chidalu still spent eight good days with the family in warri before passing away where they said the boy mentioned the names of the senior students who bullied him until the night he passed away. Could this have been an hallucination?
Meanwhile, it was gathered that some of the boys mentioned by the deceased such as Kenneth Iyang and Edward Bergue are Day students and Michael Kashamu is a Weekly boarder. Analytically, how can they be fingered in the unfortunate incident that led to the 12-year-old boy’s death? These boys were absent from the boarding house on the fateful day. Let’s debate.
Yes, we can point at situations in the country where justice was denied but this could not have warranted the deceased’s family from quickly running an autopsy independently without the presence of the relevant parties.
On social media, Sylvester’s father said that neither the school management nor the owner commiserated and empathized with him on his son’s death. But, we learnt that the school had been following up all through the boy’s guardian came to pick him till they got to their final destination in warri and even while home before passing away.
Also In a letter dated December 10, 2021, The Founder of the College, Dr. Olumide Phillips commiserated with Mr. and Mrs. Oromoni on behalf of the Board of Governors, Patrons and Patronneses of Dowen College Lagos on the sudden and early departure of their son and dearly beloved student Sylvester, adding that ‘we shall be on our way to warri once you confirm an appropriate time’. So, how has this not been empathetic if this information is anything to go by?
Social Media was quick to conclude that the College is notorious for bullying activities and this was even confirmed by the family. But, it was gathered that the late Oromoni jnr. was the 5th child of the family attending that college. Come to think of it! Why then is Mr. Sylvester still sending his kids to such a place when he is aware that the alleged nefarious act breeds there? Why?
From my findings, Dowen College got fifty (50) students of those sponsored by the Foundation of the Former President Goodluck Jonathan in time past and those students graduated successfully.
In fact, they are doing very well in their various endeavors. Of course, the former president couldn’t have sent these scholars to the College if it is what the social media called it.
But, it is not and that is why the school had been producing eminent students for the past 25 years of existence.
Honestly, no one prays to experience what Mr Sylvester is going through at this moment regarding the death of his 12-year-old son; hence, I pray to Almighty God to uphold him. But, these questions must be answered if truly we want justice to be served.
A Social commentator, Tobi Adeniyi writes from Lagos