Pastor Tobiloba Ipense, the founder of Holy Garden Ministry Zion C and S Church, has been remanded in Prison by an Ifo Magistrates’ Court sitting at Ifo, Ogun State on Thursday for allegedly killing his lover, Raliat Sanni, and burying her remains near the church’s altar.
Sanni, a divorcee and mother of five children, and the Pastor were secret lovers and the arrest of the suspect came after the deceased was reported missing by her brother, Adebola Saheed, after she left for the suspect’s church on March 21 and did not return home.
The Pastor who was arrested and interrogated by the Police on March 26, confessed to killing the victim and burying her in his church after cutting off her head and two hands. The remains of the victim were exhumed in one of the rooms close to the church altar, by Detectives, led by the state Commissioner of Police, Ahmed Iliyasu, who visited the church at Papalanto, in Ewekoro Local Government Area of the state.
Punch reported that Ipense, who denied killing Sanni, said a co-pastor, David Sopeju, of Iyana Egbado, was responsible for her death. However Sopeju on his own part, who admitted that they all belonged to white garment churches’ association, denied involvement in the murder.
However one Oluwakemi Ishola, who introduced the deceased to the cleric was also arrested and was arraigned in court alongside the suspect on three counts of murder and possession of human parts.
The charges read in part, “That you, Tobiloba Ipense, Oluwakemi Ishola and others now at large, on March 21, 2018, around 11.30pm, at Elebute village, via Itori, in the Ifo Magisterial District, did conspire among yourselves to commit felony, to wit: murder.
“That you, Tobiloba Ipense, and others now at large, did kill one Raliat Sanni, by slaughtering her and cutting off her head and two arms.
“That you, Tobiloba Ipense, and others now at large on March 27, 2018, around 7.30am, were found in possession of a human head and two arms of Raliat Sanni, inside the church, Holy Garden Ministry Zion C and S Church.”
A Counsel, I.K. Subair, who appeared for the female defendant as there was none for the Pastor, applied for bail of the second accused in liberal terms. Ishola was admitted to bail in the sum of N2.5m with two sureties each in like sum.
Ipense was ordered to be remanded in the Oba Prison pending the release of DPP advice. The case was adjourned till July 27, 2018 for legal advice.