36 years old Abiodun Egunjobi, alias Godogodo, rose from being a slum boy to the leader of a gang that defiled all reasons, struck with precision, kiked without mercy and terrorized Lagos and the South-West with reckless abandon.
Before his arrest on August 1, 2013, Godogodo, also known as the one-eyed assassin, gave the Lagos State Police Command so many headache for 14 years, so much so that on the day he was arrested, the Command erupted in joy; at least, its men would be safe from his guns.
Originally from Ogun State, Egunjobi was on the wanted list of the Police for over 10 years and the way he managed to evade the police is still legendary. In fact, he was at a time on the top of the Most Wanted list of the Command, with several Police Commissioners assigning the toughest of cops on his trail.
At that time, any robbery in Lagos had the imprint of Godogodo, with him leading or one of his boys being responsible.
He had six houses in different locations including Lagos, Ogun and Ondo States, and never stayed in a particular location for more than a month.
He had over 52 fish ponds and passed for successful business man respected by all. He never drank, smoked, womanized, nor socialize, portraying himself as a very responsible family man, but deep down inside, he was as deadly as a mamba.
Godogodo began his voyage into the deadly world of crime after spending 7 years in prison for what he considered a minor offence. As a scrap dealer in the slum of Gatankowa, Abuke-Egba, he was involved in a fight and the police arrested him. With no one to bail him out, Godogodo was sent to jail and in his mind, he believed his going to prison was an injustice and blamed the police for it.
While in prison, he became acquainted with more deadly armed robbers and formed an alliance wi8th them and took time to study them.
When he finally left the prison, he decided that he was going to deal with the police for sending him to prison for 7 years. As a precursor to actualizing his decision, he took some time to study the psyche of an average police man and used the result to build an effective strategy that helped him evade arrest for so long. This also made it possible for him to maintain an air of invincibility among his gang members. Many of them believed he had magical powers that enabled him to disappear whenever he wanted.
During his interrogation, Godogodo told the police that he took only raw cash during his operations and would only attack a place he knew there would be enough cash to cart away. He also said that he did not have any bank account as he invested all his money in properties immediately after each operation.
Godogodo visited many Lagosians with sorrow, tears and blood. Many would not forget Sunday 9, 2012, when he and his gang terrorized the State and left indelible marks in the minds of many families, after he led a coordinated attack in the City where many innocent people, including policemen lost their lives. He revealed how he coordinated the bloody operation and gave chilling details of how he led members of his gang to cart away millions of naira from bureau de change operators in Agege and Gbagada areas of Lagos.
According to Godogodo, “On that fateful day, I called one of my boys, Sayeed Omolopa, to meet me at Alfa Beach in Ajah, and some other boys led by Kasali and Ejike, said we should go to Agege and rob some bureau de change operators. The agreement was that everyone will get what he lays his hands on. We used two vehicles and over nine AK-47 rifles. When we got to Agege, some bureau de change operators that saw us ran to us thinking we wanted to change money and we opened fire on them and ran into their shops to pack all the money we found. In fact, we robbed from shop to shop and we also shot sporadically to scare people. We shot at people who tried to block the road and prevent us from moving. I can’t count the number of people killed in that operation. The boys that went with me for that operation were notorious, they were difficult to control but they all feared me.
We made a lot of money from the operation. While we were trying to escape, we met a team of policemen attached to the Rapid Response Squad, RRS, and we taught they were after us. On approaching them, we opened fire on the van and killed all the police in it and collected their rifles and escaped through Lagos-Abeokuta road. Money was not shared after the operation because everyone took what he was able to grab.
When I got home, I realized that I made over N500,000, but some days later, I was informed that one of my boys, Tosin, made over N6 million from the operation.
Everybody made a lot of money from the operation. I didn’t bother to read the newspapers the next day to know the extent of the damage but I knew many people lost their lives in that operation.
You know, as robbers, we do not go for operations to kill but we kill when we don’t have option. On our way, we spotted Oka-Oba police station, they did not know that we were robbers. We killed them before collecting their riffles.
Some few months later, we snatched a white Range Rover Sport in Ikeja and two of the occupants escaped with their phones. We suspected that they were going to call the police. On arriving Agidingbi Road, we spotted two RRS men on a motorbike and we thought they were coming after us. We slowed down and by the time they got very close to us, I opened the window and fired rapid shots at them. They fell into the gutter with their motorbike and I sent my boys to get their riffles before we drove off.
When we got to Coca-Cola junction, there was serious traffic and we decided to make a turn. When we got to the spot where the policemen fell, we saw some people who were trying to help them and opened fire on them again. We managed to make our way to Medical Road, close to Computer Village, but by then, the policemen there had received message of our operations and the moment they sighted us, they opened fire and damaged our tyres.
We managed the tyres up to Capital Road. There was traffic and I came out of the vehicle to clear the traffic and a Toyota Camry was following us.
I didn’t know that there was an armed mobile policeman in it. When I returned, I discovered that Kasali was struggling with the mobile policeman who was carrying a rifle.
I fired some shots at the policeman. He attempted to run away, I chased him and killed him there on the spot before picking his rifle.
We snatched another vehicle, abandoned the Range Rover Sport before we escaped.”
The Lagos State Police Command led by the then Commissioner, Umar Manko, mandated the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS), led by Superintendent of Police, Abey Kyari, to bring an end to the reign of Godogodo and that began intensive investigations, which led to the capitulation of his empire.
After the gang attacked the Murtala Mohammed International Airport, where two police inspectors and more than five people were killed and over N100 million stolen, the police decide to focus on profiling the suspect, because up to that point, no one knew anything about him or what he looked like.
The police also began looking at the possibility of preempting hi subsequent operations. The detectives got a lucky break when a robbery, which fitted into the established modus operandi of Godogodo’s gang was reported at a branch of First Bank in Ilorin, Kwara State and on obtaining the close circuit television recording of the operation, his image was then known.
Most of his gang members arrested were shown the video and they all agreed that the man was indeed the One-eyed bandit and that brought the police a few steps closer to their target.
The investigation led the police to Dubai where he often went to buy goods for his boutique, all in a bid to get their man.
According to the CP, surveillance was mounted around his house for 14 days in Ibadan after it (his house) was found and the police finally struck and got him. He further explained that the operation took the police seven months.
Six AK-47 rifles were recovered in his kitchen, bedroom, toilets, with each rifle having double magazines attached to it.
Abiodun Ogunjabi aka Godogodo later told the Vanguard during an interview that lack of parental care was responsible for hi becoming a deadly robber. He said his parents abandoned him at an early age to fend for himself.