HORROR in Edo State, As a tenant identified as Jeff Obasohan, allegedly set his 83-year-old landlord, identified as Pa Joseph Iyen, ablaze on Uwa street in Oredo Local Government Area of Edo State on Wednesday.
The house located between second east circular road and third east circular road in Benin the state capital.
It was gathered that there been a long dispute between the octogenarian and Obasohan over his unpaid rent and that the landlord had given the tenant a quit notice on two occasions.
But the disagreement was said to have degenerated on Wednesday, leading to the tragedy.
The elderly man was said to have died, following the severe burns he sustained from the fire.
The incident also drew the attention of residents in the area who thronged the scene to sympathise with the victim’s family.
The wife of the deceased, Mrs. Esther, alleged that the tenant had threatened her life and that of her late husband.
She also said that the suspect had failed to pay his electricity bill.
The widow 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.”
The daughter of the late man, Faith Eganbor, alleged that the tenant had been officially asked to leave the building in 2014 and 2015.
Eganbor, who described his father as a “kind” man, called for a thorough investigation of the matter.
“I need justice in my father’s matter. My father is a good man; he is 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; 2014, 2015. We came this morning to find out (that) our father is dead; burnt,” Eganbor said.
The suspect was said to have been arrested by security operatives from the Esigie Police Division.
When contacted, the state Police Public Relations Officer, Osifo Abiodun, told our correspondent on Thursday that the tenant had a protracted disagreement with the late landlord over unpaid rent before allegedly setting him ablaze.
He also said that the case had been transferred to the State Criminal Investigation Department for further investigation.
“That is true. Yes, he (suspect) is in custody. The suspect has made a statement; the case has been transferred to the state CID,” Abiodun said on telephone.
However, it was learnt that the remains of the late man was later taken to a mortuary by some security operatives.