A HOUSEWIFE of Lusaka testifying in a suspected ritual murder case involving seven deaths has told the Lusaka High Court how three strangers picked an ear and male genitals from the rooftop of her house. Silvia Mwape, 33, of Paradise area in Lilanda township, was testifying in a matter a 30-year-old man of Lilanda West is accused of killing seven people in suspected ritual circumstances.
In this features article, Legit.ng’s regional reporter in Akure, Oluwadamilare Moriyeke, writes on how tackling insecurity in Ondo state is becoming more difficult for the security agencies.
I have earlier reported on the growing insecurity situation in Ondo state, notably the alarming increase in number of ritualistic killings. See my posts dated April 19, 23, 28, 29 and May 2 of the current year. The cases mentioned below are no new cases, but the purpose of this post is to demonstrate the growing uneasiness (read: fear) of the population of Ondo state. One of the unalienable human rights is the right to be without fear. It is an obligation of the state to protect its citizens and to guarantee a peaceful life. To realize this, the rule of law is indispensable. (webmaster FVDK)
Opinion: Insecurity in Ondo State
Published: May 15, 2019 By: Wale Akinola – NAIJ.com
(….) But now, it is more pronounced in gruesome murder, arson and abduction for ritual purposes as the state records nothing less than five incidents within the past five weeks.
In Ondo city, the headquarters of Ondo west local government, a 62-year old woman with hunchback, Ibironke Abodunde, was reportedly abducted by some gunmen and all efforts to find her were to no avail. There were rumours that her son sold the mother to ritualists for N7 million but there arose a heated argument between the ritualists and the said son, who was asked to return the money after the purpose for her hunchback failed. According to report, they threatened to kill him if he did not refund their money and he too insisted that they should return his mother, who was kidnapped while selling fish, before they could get their money. However, the first child of the woman out of two, Monsurat, refuted the report and revealed that their mother did not have any son, adding that the only male child by the woman died at infancy some months after birth. Nonetheless, a source within the family pointed out that the son might be mistaken for one of her tenant, who is a herbalist and had disappeared since the incident happened.
Without leaving the vulnerable group, a septuagenarian mother of five, Medinat Ala, was killed at her residence by suspected ritualists, who removed her womb, vag.ina and brea.sts at Okeagbe area of Ikare, the headquarters of Akoko north east council. The landlady, Ala, was attacked in the wee hours of the day and clubbed to death with pestle before they removed those vital organs from her body. It was learnt that a neighbour who wanted to rescue her was attacked too and later died in the hospital. According to sources, one of the tenants, Moses Olaniyi, is now in the police net as prime suspect to the crime, while the youths and community leaders are on the watch to stop a re-occurrence as there were two cases of such incidents in recent past.
Similarly, a 80-year old Mrs. Kajosla Mogaji, was also killed under same gruesome circumstance as her head was battered and found dead in a pool of blood the next morning. (….)
Disturbed by two recent incidents of ritual killings which occurred simultaneously in Arigidi, Akoko Northeast local government area of Ondo state, the Zaki Arigidi,-in-council has pronounced the commencement of interdenominational prayer session and fasting to curtail the menace.
Besides, the community leaders employed the service of traditionalists and vigilante group for action.
Two women were killed in the community within one week interval, their breasts were clinically removed, a development that was strange to Arigidi Akoko community regarded as very peaceful.
Oba Yisa Olanipekun met with women who are family members of victims of the gruesome killing.
The monarch disclosed that an indigene of Arigidi Akoko from Ogo quarters, Tunde Ajileye alias Efo, 30 year old had been napped when his father surrendered him to the traditional ruler who handed him to the police.
The police men took him to Akure to join two other suspects now at the state Criminal Investigation Department, Akure.
A woman leader, Mrs. Ayoka Oshodi on behalf other women blamed youths looking for blood money.
She appealed to parents to monitor their children living above their income.
The chairman, Akoko Northwest local government, Elder Samson Akande said his administration would give priority to security and generation of revenue.
He said he was not happy with the recent killings of two innocent women at Arigidi Akoko.
Akande called on his management team to liaise with traditional rulers to make sure life and property are safe in the local government.
He hailed Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu for his leadership style which made infrastructures possible in every nook and cranny of the state.
Community leaders have decried incessant ritual killings in Arigidi Akoko in Ondo State, saying the people have resorted to divine intervention.
It was gathered that the Zaki of Arigidi, Oba Yisa Olanipekun and the Oba-in-Council and the entire community have embarked on interdenominational prayers, traditional efforts coupled with local vigilante efforts to unravel the scourge of ritual killings.
This, it was further gathered was strange to Arigidi Akoko which was one of the very peaceful communities in the area.
It would be recalled two women were allegedly killed for ritual killings at Arigidi Akoko with their two breasts removed clinically.
The Zaki of Arigidi, Oba Yisa Olanipekun at a meeting with the women who were the recent victims of the gruesome killing, disclosed that a son of Arigidi Akoko from Ogo Quarters, Mr. Tunde Ajileye alias Efo, 30-year-old had been arrested.
He said his father handed him over to the traditional ruler who handed him over to the police.
While noting that he had been taken to police headquarters Akure for further interrogation, he added that three suspects were now at state Criminal Investigation Department CID, Akure for their alleged roles in ritual killings at Arigidi.
A woman leader, Mrs. Ayoka Oshodi on behalf of women, blamed youths looking for hot money, appealing to parents to be vigilant on their children living above their income.
Meanwhile, the chairman, Akoko North West Local Government Area, Elder Samson Akande said his administration would give priority to security and generation of revenue.
He said he was not happy with the recent killing of two women at Arigidi Akoko, and called on his management team to liaise with traditional rulers to make sure lives and property were safe in the area.
He commended Governor Rotimi Akeredolu for his leadership style which made infrastructure possible in the nook and crannies of Ondo State
Published: May 11, 2019 By: Punch Nigeria – Bola Bamigbola, Osogbo
The Osun State Police Command has paraded an ex-convict, Adeoye Sina, for allegedly killing a pastor of a Cherubim and Seraphim church in Ibadan, Oyo State, identified as Emmanuel Ogedengbe.
Also paraded alongside Adeyeye were Bakare Fatai and Bolanle Soladoye.
The state Commissioner of Police, Abiodun Ige, while briefing journalists about the suspects said Adeoye, who had served two years’ jail term for being in possession of human wrists, connived with five others to kill Ogedengbe.
The CP said the suspect claimed that the pastor was his client.
Ige explained that Ogedengbe and his friend, Sola Adebayo, came from Ibadan on Sunday, May 5 to meet Adeoye, an herbalist, in Oba Ile – a town in the Olorunda Local Government Area of Osun State.
The CP said after eating a concoction prepared by the herbalist, Ogedengbe became weak and was later killed by some men working with Adeoye.
Explaining what happened on the day, Adebayo, who drove Ogedengbe from Ibadan to Osogbo, said upon their arrival in Osun State, Ogedengbe told him that the herbalist could also help him with ritual to boost his business.
Adebayo said he declined the offer, adding that Ogedengbe later left with some men for an unknown place, saying he became suspicious when the clergy did not return several hours later.
He stated, “I called Pastor Ogedengbe several times, but he didn’t answer his calls. Adeoye advised me to carry the ritual prepared for me and follow him to where the pastor went to, but I said no. He put me on a motorcycle and asked someone to follow me there but I told them I was not interested.
“When I returned to Adeoye’s house, he was not happy and he ordered one of his workers to follow me to where I would eat the concoction. He collected my car key when we got to his house. I lied to him that I wanted to go and eat and he returned my car key.
“That was how I managed to escape but the man he told to watch over me told him when I escaped with my vehicle. Three motorcycles were on my trail to Osogbo. They gave me a hot chase but I managed to escape.”
Responding to questions from journalists, the prime suspect, Adeoye, who claimed to be an herbalist and farmer, denied asking his men to kill Ogedengbe.
He said Ogedengbe had approached him for help because there were no longer worshippers in his church.
He said, “I have known Ogedengbe for about seven years. He came to me for help because his church was not doing well. He lost his balance after he ate the ritual I prepared for him and drank a bottle of gin in compliance with my directive.
“One of the boys I asked to follow him to the river where he would have a bath suddenly brought out a machete and severed his head. I didn’t ask them to kill him.”
One of the suspects, Bakare Fatai, who was with Ogedengbe when he was killed, said when the pastor became unconscious after taking the ritual, Adeoye instructed him and Ahmed Omonla, who is at large, to kill the pastor.
“I was looking for money to pay my thrift when Adeyeye called me to accompany the pastor to where he would eat the ritual. After the pastor finished eating the ritual, he drank the gin and became weak. Adeoye called us that we should kill him. It was Ahmed Omonla that killed him with a machete,” Bakare said.
He said Ogedengbe had approached him for help because there were no longer worshippers in his church.
The third suspect, Bolanle Soladoye, said he did not know about the crime, but was only relaxing in front of Adeyeye’s house when the incident happened.
The CP said three more suspects, who participated in the crime had yet to be apprehended, adding that all the suspects would be arraigned after investigation.
Published: May 11, 2019 By: The Economist – Lilongwe
His fists clenched on the tabletop, Bon Kalindo, an opposition mp, leans forward conspiratorially to list the magical properties of albino body parts. Place the fibula of one under a bottle of Coke and it will fizz manically, until the top pops off. Pass it in front of a torch and the light will go out. Most handily of all, a bone correctly inserted into a machine made by a reputable witch doctor will cause large amounts of cash to fly out; it’s the magnetic liquid albinos have in their bones, you understand. Sensing scepticism, Mr Kalindo brushes it aside. You are not from here, he says.
For some in Malawi, a belief in the numinous runs deep. Medicine men post flyers boasting of potions and charms to neuter rivals, punish the unfaithful or rekindle lost ardour. Such superstition is not uncommon in much of the world. But in Malawi, it can carry dark undertones. The most potent spells require ritual human sacrifice, according to a local journalist who has approached witch doctors under cover. Murders are not uncommon. Women and children are killed for their breasts and genitals. Albinos, who number no more than 10,000 in Malawi, are said to carry the most powerful magic and are thus most at risk.
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The killings, kidnappings, and physical attacks against people with albinism continued, despite government efforts to stop the violence, including several arrests. In Mozambique and some neighboring countries, people with albinism are hunted for their body parts, which are used for witchcraft.
In March 2017, the United Nations independent expert on the enjoyment of human rights by persons with albinism, Ikponwosa Ero, told the UN Human Rights Council that the situation of people with albinism in Mozambique “requires urgent and immediate attention.” She estimated that more than 100 attacks against people with albinism had occurred in Mozambique since 2014. Many of the victims are children. In September 2017, according to the police, a 17-year-old boy with albinism was killed and his brain removed, in Tete province. Four months earlier, police uncovered an attempt by two parents to sell their child with albinism in the same province. In June, the Malawian press reported that a 12-year-old Malawian boy with albinism had been killed in Mozambique, and police had arrested five people allegedly connected with the crime.
Published: February 22, 2018 By: Amnesty International
DISCRIMINATION – PEOPLE WITH ALBINISM
An estimated 30,000 people with albinism experienced discrimination and were ostracized; many lived in fear of their lives. Incidents of persecution increased; at least 13 people with albinism were known to have been killed although figures are likely to have been greater. (italics added by the webmaster FVDK). The killings were fuelled by superstition or myths about the magical powers of people with albinism. Most killings took place in the central and northern provinces, the country’s poorest regions.
A seven-year-old boy with albinism was murdered on 31 January by four unidentified men who broke into his house and abducted him while the family slept, in Ngaúma district, Niassa province. On 28 May, a group of unidentified assailants abducted a three-year-old boy from his mother in Angónia district, Tete province. On 13 September, a 17-year-old youth was killed for his body parts and organs in Benga area, Moatize district, in Tete province. The attackers removed his brain, hair, and arm bones. None of those responsible for the killings were arrested or brought to justice by the end of the year.
Despite public outcry, the government did little to address the problem. A strategy was designed to stop the killings; however, this was not implemented, allegedly because of a lack of resources.
A 10-year-old albino boy was reportedly kidnapped from his home in the early hours of Monday in northern Mozambique.
According to BBC, the boy’s father, Pires Ernesto, alleged that the kidnappers dug a hole in the wall of his house in the city of Lichinga in Niassa province and went straight to the bedroom where his four children were sleeping.
Ernesto said that only his albino son was abducted.
Police said the matter was under investigation.
A report by AFP said that albinos in Mozambique were often hunted for their body parts, which were used as charms and magical potions in the belief that they brought wealth and good luck.
More than 100 attacks against albinos in Mozambique have been reported since 2014, according to the United Nations. (bold letter type and italics added by the webmaster FVDK)
Related article: How an albino boy was snatched from his bedroom in Niassa, Mozambique
Published: July 11, 2018 By DW (Deutsche Welle)
A 10-year-old albino child was abducted at dawn on Monday (July 9) at his parents’ residence in the city of Lichinga. This is the first abduction of an albino this year in Niassa. The case is already in the hands of the criminal investigation police SERNIC.
Just after the country had reported a year free of abductions or murder of albinos, kidnappers infiltrated the boy’s home through a hole in the wall of the room where the child slept with his siblings.
Pires Ernesto, father of the minor, who was working on a night shift at the time of the abduction, sadly told DW :” My brother Carlito called to tell me that my son had disappeared , when I asked him how it happened, he said they had made a hole in the wall and had taken the child out of the room, and said that they were informing the neighbours about what happened, and when I returned to the house at 1 a.m. I did not actually find the child. ”
According to BBC, Pires Ernesto, alleged that the kidnappers dug a hole in the wall of his house in the city of Lichinga in Niassa province and went straight to the bedroom where his four children were sleeping. Ernesto said that only his albino son was abducted.
The kidnapping of albinos that have occurred in Mozambique are mostly related to superstitious beliefs. It is believed that certain body parts of albinos possess magic powers and, because of this, many end up being killed or mutilated.
Resurgence of abduction causes concern
Trindade Guilherme, a representative of the association ‘Amor à Vida’ [Love of Life] in Niassa province, views the re-occurrence of albino kidnappings as a great concern and calls upon the authorities to be swifter in investigations so that the perpetrators are found and punished.
“It is sad, that there were a lot of kidnappings in the past and suddenly it was over, but this morning in the ‘Niassa I’ neighbourhood there was a kidnapping and we became worried again. We ask the police to re-double their investigative efforts so that we can live with more tranquility, ” he says.
After the incident was reported to the police by the minor’s relatives, the authorities went to the scene, said Alves Mate, a spokesman for the Niassa corporation. He assured that the police are investigating the matter, but did not give further details.
The spokesman for the police in Niassa said:”As soon as the police received the information about this incident, the utmost attention was paid to the case and it was immediately referred to SERNIC (National Criminal Investigation Service), since this is a matter that is not only for the responsibility of the PRM”,
Alves Mate reminded us that “the investigations take a while but, at this moment, our police are already working together with SERNIC to solve this abduction case.”
In Mozambique, there are laws to protect people with albinism. However, authorities often fail to catch the kidnappers. There are few cases reported to the police and, on the other hand, police does not have all the necessary resources to hunt down the criminals.
Portuguese version: Moçambique: Recomeçam ações contra albinos no Niassa
Autoria Manuel David (Lichinga)
Uma criança albina foi raptada na madrugada desta segunda-feira (09.07.) na residência dos seus pais na cidade de Lichinga. Trata-se do primeiro rapto de um albino este ano no Niassa. O caso já está nas mãos do SERNIC.
Pouco depois de o país assinalar um ano sem raptos ou assassinatos de albinos, raptores infiltraram-se na casa dos pais do menino por um buraco feito na parede do quarto onde o menor dormia juntamente com outros irmãos.
Triste, Pires Ernesto, pai do menor, conta: “Quando cheguei do serviço, por volta de uma hora, o meu irmão Carlito chamou-me para me dizer que o meu filho tinha desaparecido e perguntei-lhe como é que isso tinha acontecido, pelo que me respondeu furaram a parede e tiraram a criança do quarto. Disse ainda que estavam a informar aos vizinhos [sobre o sucedido]. Quando regressei à casa na verdade não encontrei a criança”.
De recordar que os raptos de albinos que têm ocorrido em Moçambique estão na sua maioria relacionados com superstições. Acredita-se que determinadas partes do corpo dos albinos possuem poderes mágicos e por causa disso muitos acabam por ser mortos ou mutilados.
Ressurgimento de raptos causa preocupação
Trindade Guilherme, representante da associação Amor à Vida na província do Niassa, encara o ressurgimento dos raptos de albinos com uma grande preocupação e apela as autoridades para serem mais céleres nas investigações para que os autores sejam encontrados e punidos.
“É triste, anteriormente ocorriam muitos raptos e de repente tudo acabou. Já pensávamos que situações do género tinham acabado definitivamente. Mas esta manhã no Bairro de Niassa I houve um rapto e voltamos a ficar preocupados. Pedimos a polícia para que redobre os esforços de investigação para que se possa viver com mais tranquilidade”, lamenta.
Depois da ocorrência comunicada à polícia pelos familiares do menor, as autoridades deslocaram-se ao local como disse Alves Mate, porta-voz da corporação Niassa. Ele garantiu que a polícia está a investigar o assunto, mas não avançou detalhes.
“Logo que a Polícia recebeu a informação sobre esta ocorrência dedicou a máxima atenção ao caso que foi imediatamente encaminhado para o SERNIC (Serviço Nacional de Investigação Criminal), visto tratar-se de um assunto que não é da competência da Polícia”, esclarece o porta-voz da Polícia em Niassa.
Alves Mate lembra que “a investigação demora um certo tempo, mas neste momento a nossa Polícia já está a trabalhar juntamente com o SERNIC para desvendar mais este rapto.”
Em Moçambique, há leis que protegem as pessoas com albinismo. Mas, muitas vezes, as autoridades não conseguem apanhar os raptores. Por um lado, há poucas denúncias e faltam meios à Polícia.
LEIA MAIS (= Read more)
Moçambique não regista há um ano casos de rapto ou assassinato de albinos
Dia Internacional para a Consciencialização do Albinismo, uma data instituída pelas Nações Unidas, celebrada este ano (13.06) sob o lema “brilhando a nossa luz para o Mundo”. (13.06.2018)
Moçambique: 4 anos depois, rapto de albino continua por esclarecer
Família de albino raptado há quatro anos queixa-se da inércia das autoridades na resolução do caso. Polícia diz que a investigação está agora nas mãos da Procuradoria. (06.06.2018)
Albinos beneficiam de consultas oftalmolóicas gratuitas, em Moçambique
Cerca de 100 albinos participaram de uma campanha para melhorar a visão e sensibilizar sobre os cuidados com os olhos. Ação foi encerrada este domingo (10.09), em Maputo. (10.09.2017)
Anistia Internacional denuncia nova onda de ataques a albinos no Malawi
Malawi registou nova onda de assassinatos e ataques dirigidos a pessoas com albinismo nos últimos meses, apoiados por um sistema judicial deficiente, denunciou a Amnistia Internacional (13.06.2017)