A pastor, identified as Bassey, has reportedly committed suicide after members accussed him of diverting church finds for his personal use.
According to reports, the 49-year-old cleric slashed his throat last Monday at about 5.00am on Abari Street in Mulero, Dopemu area of Lagos, over accusations said to be false.
The incident was reported to the police at the Dopemu divison, and after depositing his remains in a morgue, his wife, and son were arrested in connection with the incident.
Pastor Bassey, before taking his life, was said to have written a short note where he stated that his family was not complicit in his death as preliminary investigation revealed that he was apparently frustrated after being accused diverting the undisclosed sum.
The source said: “The knife used by the pastor to kill himself has been recovered. He also wrote that he killed himself. We learnt that he was accused by his church of diverting money. He was probably frustrated because his neighbours described him as a God-fearing and honest person. We are still trying to find out the actual amount involved.”
Speaking also on the issue was Seun Oladimeji, who is one of the late pastor’s neighbours. She said the pastor had been awake in the night, walking around the passage and that a note, which read, “I, myself, not my wife” was found in the house after his demise.
She said: “I don’t know whether he (pastor) did it because of the money issue, but he and his wife were very friendly. He woke up around 3am that day. I learnt his wife and son, Emmanuel, later begged him to go back to bed. At about 5am, the woman screamed for help. We all gathered in their room and saw blood gushing out of the pastor’s neck.
“Unknown to the woman, he hid a knife which he used to slash his throat. Before he died, he wrote on a piece of paper ‘I, myself, not my wife’. I can say it anywhere that it was not his wife who killed him. The son was just crying; he was not himself. Both of them were arrested.”
An anonymous resident of the area informed that the pastor had a good relationship with his wife and that there was no way the family members would have had a hand in his death.
“Pastor helped his wife with her hair before the incident. They really loved each other. Most times, while the wife washed clothes, he would be spreading it on the line,” he stated, as yet another neighbour confirmed that the pastor moved into the area two years ago and would never have been killed by the wife.
The resident, Olatunde Olasunbo, said: “I did not know his church, but he was God-fearing and very nice. He was always with his bible. Even if he diverted the church funds, suicide is not the solution. He and his wife related like siblings. They moved to this area two years ago.”
Confirming the incident, the Lagos Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), SP Dolapo Badmos, informed that the case had been transferred to the State Department of Criminal Investigation (SCID), Yaba for further investigations.