Family, friends mourn Mabogunje, Lagos cycology club’s generalissimo
Create a memorial site for murdered 58-year medical doctor
Five days after his unfortunate death, family and friends of the late Dr. Afolabi Oladele Mabogunje, a 58-years-old electrical engineer, who was stabbed to death by hoodlums around Shodex area, Anthony, along Ikorodu Road, Lagos, are yet to come to terms with his passing.
To them, Mabogunje’s death has remained a puzzle and one of such, no one would wish his worst enemy.
According to them, it also goes to tell a sordid story of insecurity in a once peaceful environment like Anthony, which was an exclusive reserve for the middle class.
Described as a jolly good fellow, a big brother and father to many foster children and friends, they said his sudden death has shattered the dreams of many.
Fondly called the General by the Cycology club and all affiliated cycling clubs in Lagos, the late medical doctor they said inspired many to push beyond the limits, find and follow their passions.
Still shocked by his sudden death, the younger sister, Dr. Olusola Oyekunle, who was uncoordinated on account of what happened, managed to narrate the incident to The Guardian, especially as the family are preparing for his burial.
In her account, Dr. Oyekunle said her brother was riding early on Thursday morning, September 9, about 5:00a.m., as he has done in the past 10 years or more when unknown assailants attacked him.
She said: “He was at the meetup point as always. Then two guys with knives attacked him from behind, while he was off his bicycle and making a phone call to his co-cyclers. They stabbed him on both sides of his neck, right side of his chest and left arm. In the right side, a gory wound got the internal jugular vein. The left got a superficial branch of the internal jugular. While struggling/ fighting off the guys, his phone dropped, they grabbed it, jumped on a waiting motorcycle and sped off.
“He was gushing out blood with each contraction of the right atrium.
He needed help, got on his bicycle, held it with one hand, the other handheld his neck wound and rode to a nearby police post but the police were not there. Then he rode to a nearby bank where the security guard had a phone with no credit or data.
“A passerby was able to help him call his wife. She came to the spot, picked him up, threw his bicycle in the trunk of the car and sped off to the Gbagada general hospital. They sutured the smaller wounds, gave IVFluids but had no Cardiothoracic surgeon on ground. So, he had to be transferred to LASUTH, which had CTSU on ground.
According to her, there were other delays such as accessing the correct care, at the correct time, even after finally getting to the hospital.
“We got there at about 8:00 a.m., surgery started at about 1:30 p.m., but there was no preoperative resuscitation because they had no blood. Friends wanted to donate, but because of the ongoing doctor’s strike, they didn’t have facilities to bleed the donors.
We were in surgery till about 5:20 p.m. He was under transfused, as far as I was concerned. He never woke up from anaesthesia.
He battled the robbers, fought for his life, we battled the system but everything that could go wrong, went wrong,” she lamented.
Also, friends and family in a memorial website, created in his honour grieved over the incident.
One K. Azeez in a post yesterday, said: “It is still surreal for me, to think that I come in close contact with you at least twice a week. For some of us here, I sometimes think you do not notify us (quite untrue), not until the day you personally shared something with me. It was then I realised you’re very observant.
“Your simplicity yet diligent attribute is worth emulating.
I pray Allah (SWT) in His infinite mercy grant you Al-Janah Firdaos and comfort everyone hurting from this tragic occurrence.”
Also, Mrs. Bunmi Odukoya said: “My heart goes out to Bimbo and the entire family of Mabogunje , friends and neighbours. I still cannot fathom the reason behind this wicked act. A soul, so gentle and nice. People say you are a good husband, son, friend but I add that you are a good and peace-loving neighbour.”
Busola Denton stated: “Dear Uncle Folabi, I haven’t been able to find the right words to say to Aunty Bimbola and the whole family since your passing on to higher glory and probably may never do, but I just wanted you to know that I’ll always be grateful to you and Aunty for your immense warmth and kindness. The light you both have has lit up the flames of kindness and being there for others in me and many others.”
Also, Oluseun Mabogunje, stated: “ Folabi, my brother, my cousin and my friend. In the extended Mabogunje family you were my second in command. I depended on you a lot and I knew you would always play your part and much more. You were dependable, reliable, honest and without guile. You loved your nuclear family, your extended family and your wide circle of friends. You were full of love and laughter.
“How do we go on without you. I don’t want to think of what Bimbola, Gbenga and Titilayo would be feeling right now. I don’t want to imagine what Funmi, Sola and Niyi are going through. And Dear God your parents: Uncle Bisi and Aunty Bola. How are they going to cope? This is indeed a major calamity Folabi and I cannot understand why it happened. But we are told not to question God and let his will be done. I believe that there is a greater purpose for which God took you away from us and as God works his purpose out we have no choice but to trust in Him with faith and thanksgiving. We thank God for your life Folabi. You were a good son, brother, husband, father, cousin and friend. You were a quiet hero in many ways and you will be sorely missed. Rest in peace Folabi. God knows best.”
Another associate, Toluleke Abolade-Matiluku described the late Afolabi as a selfless and kind man.
He said: “I remembered when I was doing the opening ceremony of my hospital. This was a man who, despite the raging pandemic, risked all to attend the occasion with his lovely wife and another friend. It is an action that will remain in my memory for a long time. All I’ve heard about him is nothing but amazing. May your soul rest in perfect peace. Such a big loss. To his lovely wife and children, may God comfort and give you the needed support at this crucial time.”
Meanwhile, the police are yet to make any arrest on the matter.
The Lagos State Police Public Relations Officer, CSP Ade Ajisebutu did not pick up calls to his phne. or respond to the text messages sent to his lines.
He, however, responded to The Guardian’s text message by saying, “ I will get back to you after getting feedback.” That feedback never happened as at press time.