The father of two children who were rescued by residents of Owutu in Ikorodu in Lagos State, has blamed his actions on the handiwork of the devil.
Mr. Seun Odebunmi 36 and his 33-year old wife, Adepoju Odebunmi were reported to the police by residents who could not bear the heavy torture meted out on the minors.
Relating his own side of the story, Mr Odebunmi told the Vanguard that:
“We did not mean to cause the children any harm,” he said. “All we did was discipline them for stealing,” he added.
Continuing, the former company driver said the two children were from his former wife, who abandoned them when they were four and two years old.
“Damilare and Michael are the children I had from my first wife; their mother abandoned them when they were four years and two years old, respectively.
“I am a company driver before I had this accident that affected my legs. I have undergone two surgeries. While I was still driving, I leave home very early and come back late. Each time I return from work, I get complaints about the two of them.
“My wife and I went out; when we came back we found out that Damilare has taken my drugs. I was the one that beat him up. But I wanted to take him to the hospital before people in the community called the police, who came to his rescue.
“We have not registered both of them in school because we are still searching for a better school for them.”
His wife also corroborated her husband’s story, denying she was responsible for the scars on the back of the children:
“When I returned from an outing with my husband, I met Damilare swallowing his daddy’s drug. The daddy got angry and beat him up, then sent him out of the house. He wanted to take his shower before taking Dami to the hospital.
“The neighbours invited the police, who arrested us. I always report to their father when they misbehave. Most times, I discipline them myself. I use the same cane on them and my biological children and give them food three times daily.
“The scars on their body are from rough play.”
However, her little daughter added another angle to the story, which confirmed what the residents claimed:
“Mummy usually beats Damilare with horsewhip and plank.
“She always beat them up and if I share my food with them, she will quarrel with me, but she will not beat me.”
The children have however, been discharged from Ikorodu General Hospital, while the case charged to court, according to the Lagos State Police Public Relations Officer, DSP Kenneth Nwosu.