By Rotimi Agbana
Following the controversial police invasion of his residence at the weekend, which the Inspector General of Police, Mohammed Adamu has described as a mere invitation, pop star, Timi Dakolo, has raised alarm over the safety of his life and that of his family.
Busola Dakolo and Pastor Biodun Fatoyinbo COZA
In an official statement made available to E-Daily, the embattled singer, whose wife, Busola Dakolo, had accused the senior pastor of Commonwealth of Zion Assembly,COZA, Pastor Biodun Fatoyinbo, of raping her, stated in clear terms that the police’s invasion of his residence at the weekend was not ‘a mere invitation’ as the Inspector General of Police described it, but an attempt to intimidate, victimize and oppress his family.
“On Thursday, June 27, my wife through her legal representative filed a petition with the police in Lagos State about Mr. Biodun Fatoyinbo of Commonwealth of Zion Assembly, COZA, raping her as a minor. The petition was filed at the Office of the Assistant General of Police, Alagbon, Ikoyi. We had four meetings spanning 6-hours at the Police Station on that day and afterwards, the A.I.G himself personally assigned the file immediately and asked for an expedited action on the case. We decided not to publicize the fact that a case had been filed, as we believed that the law should be allowed to take its course. We intentionally filed the case, following the due process of the law before agreeing for the release of the interview that had been recorded many weeks before. The interview was then released with my wife’s permission, on Friday, June 28, 2019 by Y!TV.”
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“We have since been to the Police Station in Lagos several times on invitation by the Police to respond to various questions in the course of their investigations. We were therefore shocked to be invited to Abuja when no visible action had been taken to interview Mr. Fatoyinbo.”
“On Thursday, July 4, Y!TV published another video with a former employee of COZA, alleging that Pastor Biodun also raped her. My wife broke down crying as she listened to her interview. ‘There are other women…this recent?” she kept saying as tears rolled down her cheeks. What surprised us was how Modele Fatoyinbo, who asked my wife to come and help her look after their newborn child – which is what led to the second rape – is the same person that asked this lady to come and look after her children – again, 15-years after? It is strange. We do not know this lady, we have still not met her, but we would like to thank her for lending her voice to this truth.”
He added; “As far as we know, Mr Fatoyinbo has not been questioned on the strength of my wife’s petition, even after several invitations by the Police that we have honoured. However, we have been invited to Abuja to respond to queries on actions that are not crimes known under any Nigerian law – “mischief” and “falsehood” are not crimes; we were not given details of the supposed case, there was no address for the police interview and no response has been given to us on our own petition that has been filed almost a month ago.
On Wednesday, July 10, our address was shared online by Kemi Olunloyo in the most careless, reckless and wicked manner. To think she is supposed to be a woman and a mother and had no regard for the safe keep of our children and she has infringed on our Fundamental Human Rights to Personal Dignity and Privacy and is risking the lives of my 3 little children! This was callous! I decided not to engage with her, but I want Nigerians, the Armed Forces, Amnesty International and the good men and women of the Nigeria Police Force to know that since then people have been following myself and wife in tinted unmarked cars, to our home. At different times, in the last week we have been trailed. The last event is what happened again yesterday (on Saturday), and this time an attempt was made to abduct my wife and I. I had to park our cars and stay indoors. My wife and I have been unable to work and my children have been unable to go out freely even in this holiday period.”
Narrating how the police invaded his residence at the weekend, the singer said: “On Saturday July 20th, 2019, in the early afternoon, I had noticed a tinted bus parked near our home. I did not know that at the same time, my wife was being followed by a car into the estate. She noticed the car and out of fear, parked the car to be sure that her fear was not real – but it was. Every time she parked, the car parked and she decided that she should rush home quickly, since she was near the house.
Timi Dakolo and his wife Busola
When she got into the street, she noticed the same bus I had seen earlier and saw that someone from the car that was following her signaled to the bus, at which point three armed policemen wearing SARS vests surrounded her car, instructing her to alight from the car. The door of the bus was open and she saw that the bus was full of armed policemen. She immediately called her lawyer and when the policemen heard that she was talking to a legal representative, they stepped back and claimed that they were only there to drop a letter. They had not said this before nor showed her the letter. Before then, they were demanding that I step outside the house. They had also demanded that my wife step out of the car.
The letters the Policemen said they had when they heard us speaking to the lawyer were then presented. We noted that the letters were dated Thursday, July 18th. Why were they being delivered on a Saturday afternoon by a bus full of armed policemen and a car trailing my wife into the estate?
Why did they not deliver the letter and leave when neither myself nor my wife were present? And why did they only step back when they became aware that lawyers were involved? These questions have been on my mind. I do not have answers for them. The letters made no reference to any case or matter and it states that we are being investigated for a case of falsehood and mischief – two offenses that are not known in law.”
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“In the police’s press statement released yesterday (Saturday), they claimed that a Police Invitation Letter is “… a polite investigative tool used in eliciting information voluntarily from parties to aid in police investigation.” If they were just delivering a letter, the manner in which they intentionally tried to instill fear, intimidate us with guns and insist on our coming to their bus was neither polite nor trustworthy. How is the Nigeria Police pursuing justice when Pastor Biodun Fatoyinbo, who is the accused in my wife’s matter, is not being treated in this manner but the authorities I expect to pursue justice are attempting to intimidate myself and my wife? My children were at home. They could also have been in their mother’s car.
We have never threatened anyone in our lives. Rather, we are now the ones who feel threatened. That is why we have Falana and Falana Chambers representing us and they have reported this matter to the police. We received information from our lawyers, Falana and Falana Chambers, this morning (Sunday) that both our petition and the petition of Mr. Biodun Fatoyinbo will be moved to Lagos. We acknowledge the effort of the Nigeria Police to ensure that our confidence in their impartiality, professionalism and good sense in this case is not shaken.”, he said.
However, the singer expressed gratitude to Nigerians and the online support of the First Lady, Mrs Aisha Buhari. He reiterated that they would not be intimidated and are determined to get justice and ensure the church is a safe space for boys and girls.