Remembering Dipo Dina Nigerian politician businessman and former governorship candidate of the defunct Action Congress Of Nigeria (ACN) in the 2007 elections.
Monday 25th of January 2010 will forever remain tragic in the hearts and minds of friends, family, supporters and admirers of Otunba Adedipupo Dina, fondly called, DD Direct, who was murdered in cold blood on Sango Ota road in Ogun state.
It is especially painful to individuals who saw the late politician as a strong-hearted, fearless and patriotic indigene of Ogun state who, above all, had the interest and well being of the people at heart.
DD was born on July 15, 1960, into the Dipo Alapo Ekun family of Iyanro, Ijebu Ode, Ogun State. He had his secondary education at the Baptist Academy, Lagos, before going on to the University of Lagos where he got his first degree in Accounting and later M.Sc in Finance.
He became a Chartered Accountant in 1984 and subsequently founded Dele Dina & Co. and until his death, he was the Senior Partner at the accounting firm.
Before he dived into active politics in 2003 and became the Ogun State governorship candidate in 2007, he served as the chairman of Ogun State Bulk Purchase Commission where he reportedly donated his salaries and allowances to the School of the Handicapped, in Ijebu Ode, Ogun state between the year 1997 and 1999.
He was reported to have awarded bursaries to about 400 students in the state annually, and during his governorship campaign in 2007, about four million free exercise books were given to primary, secondary and tertiary institutions in the state.
This same honourable man founded the ‘Ogunnet’, a non-governmental organisation, to execute his political programmes.
Sadly, at the peak of his career, he was brutally killed by unknown gunmen suspected to be hired assassins in 2010.
Accounts of how the urbane politician was killed vary. While some of his associates are insisting that it was a clear case of assassination, the police, through the Ogun State commissioner believe it was a case of armed robbery.
He was killed by unknown assailants who spared the lives of two other persons: His driver, Mr Tunde Oyediran and a prophetess, Funmi Olagoke, who were in his black Toyota Camry Car with him when the incident happened, Vanguard reports.
There were two sides to the story; one told by his driver and the other by the police.
According to the driver, Otunba Dipo Dina was on his way to his Ikoyi residence after attending a political meeting in Abeokuta the Ogun State capital, as they approached sango-Ota, an unknown vehicle speedily drove past them causing the driver to stop, two armed men came out of the car and ordered the Otunba to come down from his SUV.
Otunba Dipo Dina being a gentleman alighted from his car, “we have been paid handsomely for your life and we are here to take it”; one of them said, before the Otunba could utter a word bullets rained on him, he died on the spot.
They had wanted to take away his corpse, but he was already on the ground and while trying to carry his corpse, they knew time was running out. So they took his car and the driver and drove away only to drop the driver in the Agbara area of Lagos.
The police report was quite different from the driver’s side of the story.
The police commissioner, Mr Musa Daura, said otherwise, ”Actually, yesterday (Monday) at about 10.30pm, I received a call from the Divisional Crime Officer and Area Commander of the area (Sango-Ota) and the Area Commander narrated to me what happened in the area that somebody was killed.
I have gone to the scene. Though I am not familiar with the terrain, the command has people who know the area and we dropped by the station. At the station, I met the DPO and personally interviewed the deceased driver and one lady called Funmi who were in the same car, Camry, black.
Each spoke individually and not collectively, that they were coming from Lagos and on reaching Winners Chapel, an unknown vehicle having four persons inside double-crossed them and ordered them to come out.
They obliged and then were ordered back inside; some obliged. The deceased raised his leg to move and there was an argument and for failure to comply, the unknown men shot him on the abdomen. One of the culprits drove off with Funmi and the driver in the deceased car. They were dropped off somewhere.
Then, I proceeded to the scene and was not able to extract any exhibit. I went to the mortuary and saw the deceased body and sympathized with the family who also came. That is all I know, to the best of my knowledge. There is an element of robbery and an element of assassination.
Late Dipo Dina’s daughter, Oyinkansola Familoni (nee Dina) who described the father in an interview with Punch said, “We all have very fond memories of our father. He was a very hands-on parent and involved his children in most of his engagements.
“Our father was a man of vision, integrity and character. He led with his actions and was a servant leader. He liked to add value in every situation he found himself in and was a true people person. He enjoyed keeping the company of his family and friends.”
The Otunba Dipo Dina International Stadium in Ijebu-Ode was named in his honour by the former governor of Ogun State, Ibikunle Amosun and his death remains unsolved.
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