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Coroner clears Dowen College, students of complicity in Oromoni’s death

Coroner clears Dowen College, students of complicity in Oromoni’s death
April 15
15:50 2024

Dowen College and its accused students have been cleared of complicity in the death of Sylvester Oromoni.

Mikhail Kadiri, the coroner who presided over the matter, gave this verdict on Monday during a seven-hour magistrate court sitting in Ogba Lagos.

The judgement, which comes after a two-year inquiry, affirmed that Oromoni died of sepsis emanating from an infection of the lungs and kidney caused by an ankle injury.

It attributed the death of the deceased to an avoidable case of parental and medical negligence.

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Sylvester Oromoni Junior controversially died on November 30, 2021, while still a student at Dowen College in Lekki Lagos.

His parents alleged that the boy, who was aged 12, got bullied, beaten up, and fed a chemical substance by five of his male colleagues.

Dowen College had dismissed the claim, alleging that Oromoni Junior only sustained injuries while playing football with his friends.

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The Oromoni family had countered Dowen’s claim, arguing that their son had no pre-existing health challenges before the incident.

In January 2022, an initial autopsy declared that Oromoni Junior died of “acute lung injury due to chemical intoxication”.

This post-mortem was discredited due to its methods and some dissatisfactions surrounding the parties who witnessed the procedure.

The Department of Public Prosecution (DPP) in Lagos conducted a second autopsy which ruled that Oromoni died “naturally”.

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The case has been under inquiry in a coroner’s court since 2022, with the bereaved vowed to pursue the case to a logical end.

Among the defendants of the case are the five accused teenage schoolboys of Dowen College, including Favour Benjamin, Micheal Kashamu, Edward Begue, Ansel Temile, and Kenneth Inyang, all of whom were cleared and released from juvenile home in 2022.

Several witnesses testified during the two-year pendency of the case, including doctors, students, Dowen staff, and the principal.

The father of the deceased Sylvester Oromoni (Snr) and the mother Rosemary Oromoni also took to the witness box on several occasions.

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Some of the Dowen employees involved in the case include Celina Uduak, Valentine Igboekweze, Hammed Ayomo Bariyu, Adesanya Olusesan Olusegun, and one Adeyemi, all of whom were initially accused of “negligent act causing harm” in the alleged bullying case.

Sylvester Oromoni Junior was buried on January 27, 2024, as the court declared April 12 and, later, April 15 to disclose its findings.

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