17th March, 2016
Uwa Street in Benin City, capital of Edo State, on Wednesday night witnessed a tragedy when a tenant, Jeff Obasohan, reportedly set his 83-year-old landlord, Pa Joseph Iyen, ablaze, following disagreement over unpaid accumulated house rent.
The incident occurred at the deceased’s residence located between 2nd East Circular road and 3rd East Circular road in Benin.
It was gathered that the late landlord had given the suspect quit notice on two occasions, when he (Obasohan) allegedly refused to pay his rent, but the quarrel resulted in Pa Iyen’s tragic death on Wednesday, following severe burns he sustained from the fire.
Speaking to journalists over the incident, the wife of the deceased, Mrs. Esther Iyen, alleged that the tenant had threatened her life and that of her late husband, adding that the suspect had also failed to pay his electricity bill.
She said: “He does not pay his house rent; he does not pay the light bill. Since 2014, we said he should leave this house, I don’t want trouble. He threatened to kill me or my husband. We took him to court. Then, my husband fell sick. Later, they said that the case had been struck out.”
Daughter of the deceased, Faith Eganbor, who described her father as “a kind man,” confirmed that the tenant had been asked to leave the building in 2014 and 2015 and called for a thorough investigation of the matter and ensure justice for the aggrieved family members.
“I need justice in my father’s matter. My father was a good man; he was kind to a fault. This is not the first time that this tenant has been asked to leave this house.
“They gave him quit notice early this year, in 2014 and 2015. We came this morning to find out (that) our father is dead; burnt,” Faith said.
When contacted, Edo State Command spokesman, DSP Osifo Abiodun, who confirmed the incident, said the suspect has been arrested, adding that the case had been transferred to the State Criminal Investigation Department for further investigation.