Nigeria: fear, anxiety in Ibadan over ritual killings

Nigeria ranks Number One in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) when it comes to ritual murders (locally referred to as ‘money rituals’) – and not only because this West African nation is SSA’s most populated country. Nevertheless, I was astonished reading about the number of recent ritual killings in some of Nigeria’s main cities. In Ibadan, the capital of Oyo State, in less than four weeks, beginning from June 1 of this year, at least five persons were savagely murdered by suspected ritual killers. One of the victims was a five-year old boy. Also in August 2019, ritual murders had been reported, with six victims within one month in the same Akinyele Local Government Area. Consequently, the population of Ibadan lives in fear, everyday, of becoming victim of the suspected ritual killers, despite the assurances of the police and governmental authorities and the attention of traditional rulers for these heinous crimes.

As one of the local chiefs stated: “The way the killers have been operating left me with no option than to believe that they are killing for money rituals.”

Warning: the following article contains graphic details (webmaster FVDK).

Ibadan – City of blood  
Fear, anxiety in Ibadan over ritual killings • Police, government assure residents

Published: June 27, 2020
By: The Sun, Voice of the Nation- Oluseye Ojo, Ibadan  

Ibadan is fast turning into a city of blood, no thanks to a yet-to-be-apprehended group of ritual killers that invaded the city recently and left in their wake a long trail of blood of victims. The affected local government district, Akinyele Local Government Area, is currently under a siege. In less than four weeks, beginning from June 1, 2020, at least, five persons had been killed by suspected ritual killers in different communities of the local government.

Understandably, the development has sent shivers down the spines of residents of one of the 11 local governments that makes up Ibadan, the state capital, and one of the 33 local government areas of the state. The local government, which has 12 wards, was created in 1976 and occupies a land area of 464.892 square kilometres with a population density of 516 persons per square kilometre.

Experts have said that using 3.2 per cent growth rate from 2006 National Population Census figures, the 2010 estimated population for the local government has been estimated to be 239,745. It hosts notable institutions including International Institute of Tropical Agricultural (IITA) at Idi-Ose; Nigeria Institute of Social and Economic Research (NISER) at Ojoo, Federal School of Statistics at Ajibode Road; 2nd Division of the Nigerian Army and reasonable percentage of the University of Ibadan land.

A spate of mysterious killings

Since the first ritual killing that took place on June 1, 2020, at Akinyele town, the ritual killings have been consistent. The June 1 incident involved Miss Baraka Bello, a female student of the Department of Science Laboratory Technology (SLT), Federal College of Animal Health and Production, Moor Plantation, Ibadan. She was reportedly raped before being killed. The killers, operating in a way that is reminiscent of the infamous Badoo Boys, were said to have smashed her head at the back of her father’s house at Oloro area of Kara in Akinyele town.

On June 5, 2020, ritualists also smashed the head of 29-year-old woman, Mrs. Azeezat Somuyiwa, with a big stone, at Ijefun community, near Ojoo. She was said to be seven month pregnant at the time of killing.

On Saturday June 13, 2020, a National Diploma student of Oke Ogun Polytechnic, Saki, Oyo State, Grace Oshiagwu, 21, was raped and killed inside a church at Idi Ori, Sasa, Ojoo area of Ibadan.

On Monday, June 22, 2020, five-year-old boy, Mujib Tirimisiyu, was killed by ritual killers, who reportedly hit his head with a shovel at Olorunsogo Phase II, Tose, Moniya, Ibadan. He suffered the fate while he was allegedly defecating behind their house. His loud shout attracting the attention of his mother to rush to where he was defecating. On getting there, she saw some boys dragging his lifeless body into the bush. On sighting her, the attackers reportedly dropped the corpse and fled.

On Wednesday, June 24, 2020, the life of 42-year-old woman, Mrs. Olusayo Fagbemi, residing at Ajibade Street, Sasa, Ibadan, was cruelly cut short by ritual killers. She was allegedly attacked while she washed plates in front of her residence on that Wednesday morning. And, the assailants were said to have hit her on the head, with either a shovel or a cutlass.

On being hit with the weapon, she shouted. This made her husband to rush out from their room.  On getting outside, he met his wife in a pool of her own blood. The attackers reportedly took to their heels the moment they sighted her husband and other alamed residents of the house, rushing out. The woman was said to have been rushed to a private hospital for medical attention to save her life. But unfortunately, she could not make it. She was confirmed as ‘brought in dead’ (BID) in the hospital.

Police reassure residents, amid fear

A climate of fear now exists among the natives as no one knows who could be the next victim or when detectives could crack open the conundrum of ritual killings ravaging the community and help bring rest to restless minds. A resident of Sasa, who agreed to speak on the promise of his name not being used in print, blamed suspected ritualists as being behind the incessant killings in the local government area.

“I don’t  want my name to be mentioned because those evil people may be residing in the same community with us, and I don’t want them to zero in on my family,” he said. “I think communities should set up vigilance groups to address this ugly trend. Also, the security agencies and the state government should halt the incessant killings in this local government area.”

The Police Public Relations Officer in Oyo State, Olugbenga Fadeyi, who confirmed the death of the five persons, said the police, who he said, are already on the trail of the assailants, have already commenced investigations. Confirming the incident that occurred at about 5:40am on June 24, 2020, he said the deceased “was attacked right at the frontage of her house while she washed plates and she sustained injury on her head. At her shout, her husband rushed out and met her in the pool of her blood, while the assailant(s) ran away. She was rushed to a hospital where she was confirmed dead. Efforts are being intensified to apprehend the culprits as the Police is on their trail.”

Fadeyi who confirmed that some arrests have been made, assured that efforts are being made to nip the incessant killings in the bud. He explained that the Commissioner of Police in the state, Nwachukwu Enwonwu, and Special Adviser to Governor Seyi Makinde on Security, Mr. Fatai Owoseni, a former Commissioner of Police in Lagos and Benue States, had visited Akinyele and have been working assiduously to arrest the situation.

Speculations on the cause of killings

Meanwhile, some residents of the local governments have accused some landlords and village heads (Baales) of either letting their houses or selling their land to suspected ‘Yahoo Boys’ or ‘Badoo Boys’ who have in turn been decided to terrorize the local government. A middle-aged man, who did not want his name mentioned in print said he warned many of the village heads then, but they did not heed his words because of pecuniary purpose.

This correspondent had, in August 2019, exclusively reported two stories in  the Daily Sun, about how ritual killers resurfaced in Ibadan, after a similar development was nipped in the bud at Ikorodu in Lagos. It was reported then that at least six persons were dispatched to their early graves within one month. They killed all the six victims then in the same Akinyele Local Government.

Then, the first reported incident occurred at Abatakan, near Ojoo where four persons were said to have been killed. The second and third reported cases happened at Fatokun in Moniya and Olomowewe in Akingbile, on Saturday August 24, 2019. One person each were reportedly killed in the two places. The three incidents followed the same pattern as the assailants, operating like the Badoo Boys that once terrorized Ikorodu, Lagos, were said to have struck their targets at about 10 a.m. The killers, it was gathered, used grinding stones to smash the heads of their victims, and handkerchiefs to wipe their blood before taking their leave, without stealing anything from their victims.

Lawmaker’s advice on how to stay safe   

The recent resurgence has filled the residents with déjà vu. Their leaders assure that this time around they are up in arms. Chairman, Oyo State House of Assembly Parliamentary Council, Ayotunde Fatokun, and the member representing Akinyele Constituency I, told Saturday Sun: “On the issue of ritual killings in Akinyele Local Government, we are trying to do a number of things to ensure that the phenomenon is curbed. In terms of security, we appreciate Governor Seyi Makinde for his efforts and for moving the Special Adviser on Security to the local government to see things for himself and have a first-hand view of what is going on there.

“Many arrests have been made in the last couple of weeks on the incessant killings. But the new killings have shown to us that there are more than one group involved. And efforts are ongoing to ensure that we bring the perpetrators of the evil to book. Most importantly, one major concern as the lawmaker representing the constituency is to enlighten my people on basic security tips and steps they should take to ensure that we are able to curb this menace in no time. Of course, I will like to advise people that they should stop staying outside alone and that they should ensure that they are in company of somebody to guide against eventualities.

“For houses that are close to the bush, we should clear the bushes in order to make it uneasy for these perpetrators of evil to get in and out of residences of people, and also make it uneasy for them to run away. If you are inside the house, let us ensure that we lock our doors. If we notice anything, let us make calls so that something can be done. You may need to shout for your neighbours to come to your aid. If you are able to reach your phone, you can call the 615 Emergency Number of Oyo State, so that security agencies can attend to you promptly.”

Traditional rulers speak on security measures

Speaking on the scary insecurity issue, Alakinyele of Akinyele, Oba James Odeniran, in a chat with Saturday Sun, said: “I must confess to you that we have to subscribe to the fact that the people that are committing the crime are living within our local government. That is why as one of the steps being taken, we have resolved that the issue of landlords and tenants relations should be taken into consideration. At the landlord association’s level, they should be able to know where their tenants come from, the jobs they are doing, know whether they have means of livelihood and know if they are working.

“Also, based on the name of the name of this council, people have found it difficult to differentiate between Akinyele Local Government Area and Akinyele town, with regard to the incessant killings in the area. I want to say it categorically here that apart from that of Barakat Bello, all other incidents were not from Akinyele town. As a result of these incidents, people are now afraid of coming to Akinyele town. I want to say to the whole world that there is relative peace in Akinyele town now. We have taken some steps when the incident of Barakat occurred to ensure adequate security in Akinyele town.”

The Oniroko of Iroko, Oba Olasunkanmi Abioye, believes that if the ritual killings have something to do with the alleged sale of land to the so-called Yahoo Boys, it is not so in his domain. “As far as my own town is concerned, there is no land that was sold to ‘Yahoo Boys,” he said. “But these developing areas like Moniya and Ojoo, if you get there, you would find ‘Yahoo boys’ there.  The way they behave and the amount they pay to rent houses in those areas is something else. They can rent a flat for N450,000 per year. Is the money available in circulation like that?

“On this development, we should warn landlords and the Baales about accommodating these people in their houses and communities. The baales and Kabiyesis should be vigilant. They should not sit in their houses or palaces without taking actions. They should go round their domains and get people that should be giving them information about their domains. They should not sit down and expect people to come to them and give them envelopes, and many things. What we need in Akinyele Local Government now is to watch out for those ‘Yahoo Boys’ because they are too many in our local government areas now.”

One of the village heads in the local government, the Alagbagi of Agbagi, Chief Babatunde Fabunmi, said he did not believe that the people perpetrating the evil are ‘Yahoo Boys,’ who bought land from Baales. “The baales could have sold land to people, irrespective of whether you hail from this local government or this state or not,” he said.  “To fish out the killers, we should not focus only on those we sold our land to. The evil people could also be among our own people from this local government.  God is the only ultimate judge.

“The way the killers have been operating left me with no option than to believe that they are killing for money rituals. They would use dangerous objects to break the heads of their victims and would use white handkerchiefs to collect their blood and run away with it. I must tell you that in our different communities, we have put strong security measures in place, with the support of the government. I can tell you that in Ikereku area now, the government has beefed up the presence of security personnel there. If you are passing through Ikereku now, no matter your personality, the security agents would stop you and do thorough search of your vehicle before they allow you to go.”

LG chairman thanks Gov. Makinde

The Chairman, Akinyele Local Government, Toaoheed Adedigba-Jimoh, thanked Governor Makinde, for his continuous support. “The support that we need to overcome this menace in Akinyele Local Government, he is ready to give us,” he said. “He has directed his Special Adviser on Security, and relevant security commanders in the state to visit this local government.

“They have allowed us to incorporate community policing into the security architecture of our local government. They include hunters, Soludero Hunters Associaton, members of Oodua People’s Congress (OPC) and local vigilance group. So, we are using all security means to overcome this challenge.

Source:
City of Blood – Fear, anxiety in Ibadan over ritual killings – Police, govt assure residents

What the **** is goin’ on in Ogun State, Nigeria? Alarming increase in ritualistic murders!

Killing for ritualistic purposes is rampant in Nigeria. In most states, ‘money ritual’ is a well-known phenomenon. I have already reported many cases on this site. In many states ritual murders are being committed. Reporting on these cases is erratic. Not always there is a follow-up, informing the public of any arrest made, or – in case suspects are arrested – whether they are put on trial, and what the outcome is.

Unfortunately, ritualistic murders or murders for ritualistic purposes are not rare in Ogun State, in Nigeria’s southwest. This year alone I already reported various cases, my most recent postings were on April 27 and March 15

Below I’ve listed four cases which happened during the past few months. Mind you, these are cases which have been reported. How many cases go unreported? To be correct, the fourth case, a seven-year old boy who was murdered for ritualistic proposes by his mum and step-father was already reported on April 27, from a different source. It does not make it less serious. I’m afraid ritualistic killings in Ogun State will continue, as they will in other states. How to end this barbaric practice?
(webmaster FVDK).

Notorious cultist arrested in Ogun State, confesses to killing three

Published: June 3, 2020
By: The Eagle Online, Nigeria

A notorious cultist, Adewale Adeoye, popularly known as 16, has confessed to killing no fewer than three persons since joining the Eiye cult.

Adeoye made the confession on Tuesday when he was paraded alongside 30 others by the Ogun State Police Command for different crimes.

The Commissioner, Ogun State Police Command, Kenneth Ebrimson, who paraded the suspects at the command headquarters in Eleweran, Abeokuta, accused them of involvement in cultism, armed robbery, murder and illegal possession of firearms.

Ebrimson said Adeoye, who has been on the wanted list of the police in connection with cult-related killings in Ijebu-Ode and its environs, added that he was arrested alongside five others at their hideout in Ijebu-Ode.

He said two locally-made single-barrelled pistols, one double-barrelled pistol, 11 live cartridges, assorted charms and Indian hemp were recovered from them.

Adeoye told newsmen that two of his victims were the killers of the leader of the Eiye confraternity in Ijebu-Ode, identifying them as Vandan, Koledowo and Abas.

He said he had been arraigned twice for similar crimes between 2012 and 2017.

He said: “I have been arraigned twice.

“I was first arraigned in 2012 and regained my freedom in 2015 because the complainant did not show up in court and they could not find anything incriminating against me.

“A few days after, the police came for my arrest again and kept me in custody for another two years before I regained my freedom again in 2017.”

Adeoye said he was the fourth in command in the confraternity in 2017 and later became the second in command a year later.

When asked if he renounced his membership of the cult after his arrest, he said: “I have not renounced my membership.

“They didn’t give me the chance because they told me that they would kill me if I renounced my membership.”

Source: Notorious cultist arrested in Ogun, confesses to killing three

AND

Ogun State:
Pastor seeking ‘power’ to grow congregation killed by native doctor for ritual

Published: May 27, 2020
By: The Eagle Online, Nigeria

A Pastor, Kalejaiye Ezekiel, who went to seek traditional power, has been killed by the same native doctor from whom he sought help.

According to available information, the pastor said he needed the power to draw worshippers to his church.

The Ogun State Command has since last month arrested the native doctor, Isiaka Ogunkoya, for the murder of the pastor.

The 48-year-old native doctor has also confessed to killing Ezekiel.

Ogunkoya told policemen mid last month: “The Pastor came to me for power so that his church would  grow.

“I used the opportunity to use him for my personal job.

“I mixed some sleeping solution for the pastor to drink and he slept off moments afterward.

“As he dozed off, I  picked a knife and slaughtered him.

“I am a native doctor and I have helped so many people, including pastors who want their congregation to grow, in the area.

“This particular incident happened because I personally needed human parts for a particular concoction that I wanted to prepare for one of my clients in Isoyin.

“When the Pastor came, saying that he wanted power so that his congregation could grow, I used the opportunity to kill him and used the needed parts for the concoction.

“I gave him some solution to drink and he fell deeply asleep and that afforded me the time to slaughter him and cut out the parts I needed for my concoction.

“I know I have done wrong, but I want forgiveness because if you go around and ask about me, people will tell you that I am a good person.

“This one just happened the way it did.”

The spokesperson of the Ogun State  Police Command, Abimbola Oyeyemi, said the native doctor was arrested by policemen on routine stop and search duty along Isoyin Road.

Oyeyemi, a Deputy superintendent of Police, said Ogunkoya would be profiled to know how many people he may have killed in the same manner.

He said the native doctor would be charged for murder at the end of investigation.

Source: Pastor seeking ‘power’ to grow congregation killed by native doctor for ritual

AND

Ogun State:
Human parts dealers go violent after customers fail to pay N1m for ‘fresh hand’

Published: May 21, 2020
By: The Eagle Online, Nigeria

Alleged human parts dealers in Ogun State last week went violent following the failure of three of their customers to come up with the N1 million agreed for the supply of a “fresh human hand”.

According to available information, after the customers failed to pay for the human hand, the human parts dealers lured them to a bush, where they had them beaten thoroughly for a couple of days before releasing them on May 17, 2019.

According to the spokesman of the Ogun State Police Command, Deputy Superintendent of Police Abimbola Oyeyemi, the development led to the arrest of four persons involved in the deal.

Oyeyemi, in a statement on Wednesday, said the operation, carried out in conjunction with the Ogun State Security Outfit, So-Safe Corps, also led to the recovery of the fresh human hand.

The Command’s spokesman, who identified the buyers of the fresh human hand as Matthew Idosu, John Feyisetan and Samuel Adegbola, said they were arrested alongside a 40-year-old herbalist, Michael Itomu, by operatives of the Police and So-Safe Corps at Idi-Iroko in Ipokia Local Government Area of the state for being in possession of a fresh human hand.

He said the suspects, through Idosu, had contracted someone in Abeokuta, the state capital, who promised to get the human hand for them for N1 million for money rituals.

Oyeyemi said in the statement: “On delivering the hand, the dealers demanded the agreed N1 million, but the money was not readily available; this led to a serious scuffle between them and they angrily took away the duo of Samuel Adegbola and John Feyisetan into a bush, where they thoroughly beat them before they were released on May 17, 2020.

“It was the action of those, who supplied the hand, that made the whole secret to leak out and which eventually led to their arrest.”

He said following a tip-off, the Idi-Iroko Divisional Police Officer, CSP Sunday Opebiyi, detailed his detectives in collaboration with men of the So-Safe Corps to ambush the suspects, leading to the arrest of three of them in Owode-Yewa, adding: “Their arrest led to the arrest of the herbalist in the early hours of Tuesday, May 19, 2020.”

Oyeyemi said the fresh human hand had been taken to the Idi-Iroko General Hospital for preservation, adding that the Commissioner of Police in the state, Kenneth Ebrimson, had ordered the transfer of the case to the State Criminal Investigation and Intelligence Department for further investigation.

He said: “He also directed that other members of the syndicate, who provided the hand, should be hunted and brought to justice.”

Source: Human parts dealers go violent after customers fail to pay N1m for ‘fresh hand’

AND

Ogun State: Mum, stepdad kill boy for ritual, bury him in upright position with parts missing

Published: April 26, 2020
By: The Eagle Online, Nigeria

Operatives of the Ogun State Command have arrested three persons, including the mum and stepdad, of a seven-year-old boy in the state, Pelumi Apalaya, for allegedly killing him for ritual.

The spokesman of the Command, Abimbola Oyeyemi, revealed this in a statement on Saturday.

According to the police, those arrested were the boy’s mum, Adetutu Apalaya; her husband, who is the boy’s stepdad and a herbalist, Lajuwon Ogunleye; and his friend, Fatai Sefiu.

Oyeyemi said in the statement that the boy, who lived with his mum and stepdad until he died in Abigi area of Ogun State, reportedly slumped and died on the spot without being ill.

This was said to have aroused the suspicion of some neighbours who trailed Apalaya, Ogunleye and Sefiu to a bush, where the corpse of the boy was reportedly buried in a mysterious way.

The incident was then reported at Abigi Police Station, with the Divisional Police Officer, SP Tarkighir Joseph, leading a crack team to track down the suspects in Iwopin area of Ijebu Waterside, Ogun State on Wednesday.

The three suspects led the policemen to where Pelumi was buried.

There, it was discovered that the victim was buried in an upright position with some of his parts removed.

Oyeyemi said: “On interrogation, the second suspect, Fatai Sefiu, told the detectives that the boy was actually used for ritual by the stepfather (Ogunleye) in connivance with the deceased boy’s mother.

“He stated further that the couple had reached a conclusion before he was co-opted into the business.”

He stated that Apalaya initially denied knowledge of her husband’s plan to use Pelumi for ritual, but later admitted to the crime, adding: “She was dumbfounded when asked whether or not she followed them to the bush where her son was buried and the mode of burial of the boy.

“Meanwhile, the Commissioner of Police, CP Kenneth Ebrimson, has ordered the immediate transfer of the case to the homicide section of the State Criminal Investigation and Intelligence Department for further investigation and prosecution.”

Source: Ogun: Mum, stepdad kill boy for ritual, bury him in upright position with parts missing

South Africa: Limpopo police arrest suspect wanted for serious crimes, including body dismemberment

Beware, suspicion alone does not count! However, a dismembered body is an indication that a muti murder may have been committed. The truth is that muti murders do occur rather frequently in the region, notably Limpopo Province (webmaster FVDK).

Limpopo police arrest suspect wanted for serious crimes, including body dismemberment

Published: April 8, 2020
By: The Citizen (South Africa)

It is alleged that the man committed the crimes between 2015 and 2019.

A 32-year-old suspect wanted for a string of serious and violent crimes that include rape, burglary and the murder of a man whose body was dismembered, has been arrested.

The arrest was made in Sterkfontein, outside Groblersdal, Limpopo police said on Tuesday.

It is alleged that the man committed the crimes between 2015 and 2019.

In one of the incidents in Legolaneng on 28 September 2016, police were alerted to a murder.

Police spokesperson Brigadier Motlafela Mojapelo said: “On arrival at the scene, they found the body of a man with multiple injuries and some body parts missing. He was later identified as Thabitha Makola, then aged 62.”

The motive for the killing is unclear but police are investigating whether it was a ritual murder.

“The suspect was subsequently arrested through forensic investigations that followed and was further linked to other four cases of rape and three [of] burglary residence in the area,” Mojapelo added.

The suspect is expected to appear in the Nebo Magistrate’s Court on Thursday.

Source: Limpopo police arrest suspect wanted for serious crimes, including body dismemberment

The Limpopo River Basin

Four burnt to death after ritual killing in Edo State, Nigeria

The following reproduced article is not about an entirely new incident of mob justice in Nigeria. It relates to the same jungle justice addressed in my February 27 posting and also yesterday’s Editorial. However, for completeness sake I want to include it here: readers who may have missed previous posts may find in the article reproduced below the necessary information to fully understand the editorial in the Nigerian newspaper The Nation (online) posted yesterday (webmaster FVDK).

Four burnt to death after ritual killing in Edo

Edo State Commissioner of Police DanMallam Muhammed, addressing journalists in Benin City, Edo State capital, on Monday, October 14, 2019

Published: February 25, 2020
The Punch, Sola Shittu – Benin (city), Nigeria

Three middle-aged men and a woman were on Monday set ablaze by a mob at Otuo community in the Owan East Local Government Area of Edo State.

The four were alleged to have been involved in the murder of a Senior Secondary School 3 pupil of Azama College, Otuo.

 PUNCH Metro gathered that the pupil was allegedly killed and her head severed from her body for ritual purposes.

A source in the community said the murder was carried out at night by her neighbour who sent her on an errand to get sachet water in the evening.

While in his room to deliver the sachet water, she was allegedly murdered and decapitated.

Our source said when the girl’s parents could not find her, they raised the alarm.

The alleged culprits were said to have been caught while attempting to dump the victim’s body in the early hours of the following day.

They were said to have identified two other persons, including the woman who performed the rituals for them.

“The two men were burnt this morning (Monday) along with the woman, while her house was razed. They were all dragged to the popular Women Centre where the community police station is located. The third man was traced to his farm and apprehended,” he said.

Later in the day, our source confirmed that the third man had also been burnt by the mob.

The state Police Public Relations Officer, Mr Chidi Nwabuzor, while confirming the incident, said two suspects were lynched.

“The command is aware that a young girl’s head was cut off and the youth of the community arrested two suspects, brought them to the front of the station and set them ablaze,” he said.

Source: Four burnt to death after ritual killing in Edo

Nigeria: Angry mob sets four on fire over ritual killing in Edo State

Mob justice is a serious problem in many if not all of Nigeria’s states. Early January of this year an angry mob set robbers ablaze in Calabar, the capital city of Cross River State. In early October last year an angry mob in Benue State set three suspected armed robbers ablaze over their alleged involvement in the robbery and serial killings witnessed in Gbaste community. I could cite many more examples of jungle justice in Nigeria, but this will do, for the moment. Recently, two – or four, accounts differ, see below – young men were set ablaze for alleged involvement in the killing of an SS3 Secondary Schoolgirl of Azama College, Otuo, Edo State.

The use of violence is a prerogative of State authorities. Moreover, every accused is considered innocent as long as he or she has not been found guilty by an independent and impartial judge during a public, transparent trial.
Mob justice is a sign of a weak state authority and should not be tolerated. Mob justice resulting in the death of the victim is a crime; those responsible should be prosecuted and punished by law (webmaster FVDK). 

Angry Mob Sets Four On Fire Over Ritual Killing In Edo State

Source: File photo. 

Published: February 25, 2020
By: Naija News – Richard Ogunsile

Reports reaching Naija News at this time reveals that there was an uproar at a village in Owan East Local Government Area of Edo state on Monday, following the murder of a young girl who was reportedly beheaded for ritual purpose.

According to a source in the Otuo community in a chat with newsmen, some four young men were set ablaze for alleged involvement in the killing of an SS3 Secondary Schoolgirl of Azama College, Otuo.

The source whose identity was not given due to security purpose reveals that the child’s head was cut off at night hour by the culprits while she was on an errand by her neighbour who sent her to get him sachet water.

Naija News understands that she was murdered at the point of delivering the sachet water.

It was said that the girl’s parents cried out after they could not find their daughter, but that the culprits were nabbed while making moves to dump the victim’s body before the rising of the sun of the next day.

Further information revealed that two out of the four culprits were identified, including the woman who is to perform the rituals for them.

The source said, “The two men were burnt this morning (Monday) along with the woman, while her house was razed. They were all dragged to the popular Women Centre where the community police station is located. The third man was traced to his farm and apprehended,”

However, after the arrest of the culprits, furious residents set the young men on fire.

Meanwhile, a confirmation from the state Police Public Relations Officer, Mr Chidi Nwabuzor, mentioned that only two of the suspects were burnt alive.

“The command is aware that a young girl’s head was cut off and the youth of the community arrested two suspects, brought them to the front of the station and set them ablaze,” he said.

Source: Angry Mob Sets Four On Fire Over Ritual Killing In Edo

Related article: 

4 burnt to death for kidnapping SS III student for rituals in Edo

Published: February 24, 2020
By: Vanguard – Ozioruva Aliu

BENIN CITY— FOUR persons, including a lady, were, yesterday, set ablaze by a mob in Otuo, Owan East Local Government Area over allegation of kidnapping an SS III female student and killing her for ritual purpose.

It was gathered that the victim, a student of Azama College in Ikhuera quarters of the rustic town, was allegedly sent to buy sachet water by her neighbour Sunday night.

A source said while she was on her way from buying the water that her head was severed from her body apparently for ritual.

It was also gathered that when the young girl’s parents could not find her, they raised the alarm, but her whereabouts remained unknown.

The source said one of the culprits caught in the early hours of yesterday while attempting to dump the victim’s body confessed to the crime and those involved, including the woman, who allegedly performed the rituals for them.

“The two boys were burnt this morning (yesterday) along with the woman while her house was razed. They were all dragged to the popular ‘Women Centre’ where the community police station is located. The third boy was traced to his farm and apprehended,” he said.

Vanguard gathered that the third man apprehended in connection with the ritual killing was later burnt by a mob late yesterday.

One of the suspects, the gang leader, identified as Lukeman, was alleged to be a serial killer while two of the boys, who accompanied Lukeman, are of same parents and from Ikhueran quarter, Otuo.

He also said the woman, who performed the rituals was from Kogi State while Lukeman is said to be from Auchi in Etsako West Local Government Area of the state.

Spokesman for Edo Police Command, Mr Chidi Nwabuzor, while confirming the incident, said it was only two of those arrested that were burnt.

“The command is aware that a young girl’s head was cut off and the youths of the community arrested two suspects they took to the station where they were set ablaze,” he said.

Source: 4 burnt to death for kidnapping SS III student for rituals in Edo

South Africa: Polokwane police launch manhunt after discovery of mutilated body

The following case may not refer to a ritualistic murder though there are strong indications that a ritual murder has indeed been committed. Moreover, the article refers to previous ritual killings that have taken place as “There have been concerns over the high number of ritual killings in the province for years, particularly of women.”, see below (webmaster FVDK).

Polokwane police launch manhunt after discovery of mutilated body

Published: December 15, 2019
By: The South African – Thabo Baloyi

A passer-by made the gruesome discovery of a mutilated body near the Peter Mokaba Stadium.

The South African Police Service (SAPS) in Limpopo are on the search for the perpetrators behind the horrific discovery of a badly mutilated body in Polokwane on Thursday 12 December 2019.

The body was found dumped in the bushes along the N1 bypass, near the Peter Mokaba Stadium. A passer-by, who came across the body, noticed some limbs were missing and called the police who then rushed to the scene.

“Upon arrival at the scene, the police were met by the gruesome scene of the badly mutilated body of a man who is estimated to be in his forties, wearing grey trousers, a blue T-shirt and black shoes”, police spokesperson Brigadier Motlafela Mojapelo said.

Provincial police commissioner Lieutenant-General Nneke Ledwaba strongly condemned the attack and called for those responsible to face the full might of the law

“The commissioner has noted the incident with shock, especially the brutality that characterised this murder and has ordered an intensive manhunt for the suspects,” the statement read.

Police are appealing to anyone with information that can assist in the arrest of the suspect(s) and who can assist in the identification of the deceased, to contact Crime Stop at 08600 10111 or the nearest police station.

Ritual murder not ruled out as motive

While Mojapelo did note that the motive was unknown at this stage, they were not ruling out the likelihood of a ritual killing and investigations into the murder are ongoing.

There have been concerns over the high number of ritual killings in the province for years, particularly of women.

Earlier in 2019, Giyani villagers discovered that the private parts of a 69-year-old Giyani man, who had been killed after being hit by a car, were missing. His family believes that he had actually been murdered as part of a ritual act.

In 2018, the headless body of a woman was found in Lulekani, outside Phalaborwa, insider her bedroom. In the same year, the Polokwane High Court sentenced two men to life in prison for the murder of a 17-year-old girl. They were reportedly arrested while trying to sell her head to a local businessman.

The dark practice of ritual murders, motivated by cultural beliefs, is usually carried out by traditional leaders and involves the removal of body parts, whether for self-enrichment or to appease ancestors.

Source: Polokwane police launch manhunt after discovery of mutilated body

Polokwane – previously called Pietersburg – is the capital of Limpopo province

Nigeria: Hunchback hunters

Read this “chilling story of how a prison warden, moviemaker and con-herbalists abduct, butcher 30-year-old hunchback in Osun State, Nigeria, for money ritual.” The cold-blooded murder of an innocent man for money ritual occurred in September last year and the article was published in December.” Warning: the article contains graphic details of the heinous crime the accused allegedly committed (webmaster FVDK).

Reporters of the Saturday Sun were able to interview some of the suspects in police custody – which his amazing and raises several questions. Who authorized these interviews and why? Is this in conformity with the defendants’ rights, despite the horrible accusation against them and their alleged responsibility and guilt? What is the added value of interviewing people in detention who have not yet been tried by an impartial court?

The following article is a sad story. We sympathize with the victim and his dear ones. Once more, it is demonstrated that the belief in the power and juju obtained through ‘money ritual’ in Nigeria is widespread. We must fight against ignorance and superstition and compliment the Nigerian authorities for all efforts to help eradicating this evil from Nigerian society (webmaster FVDK).

Nigeria: Hunchback hunters

Published: December 21, 2019
By: The Sun, Voice of the Nation – Chioma Okezie-Okeh

On September 15, 2019, a 30-year-old hunchback, Olusegun Fasakin, was abducted from his home at Igangan-Ijesa, Atakunmosa East Local Government Area of Osun State. All efforts by the police, his family and friends to locate him did not yield any result. His abductors never called to demand a ransom. 

The truth of what became of him recently resurfaced. It was an accidental discovery by law enforcement agents tracking a suspect of a robbery case.

Since then, detectives have picked some of the suspects involved and interrogated them. The suspects sang like canaries, divulging the ghastly details. The suspects are a ragtag group of desperadoes, that include a prison warden (correctional officer) and a set of herbalists who are ex-convicts previously jailed for a similar offence.

Saturday Sun interviewed some of the suspects in police custody. Their stories add up to a macabre tale of the cold-blooded murder of an innocent man for money ritual.

Discovery by mistake

Acting on a petition by the victims of the armed robbery incident that took place in Ijesa, on October 10, 2019. Head of the Inspector General of Police, Intelligence Response Team (IRT), Deputy Commissioner of Police Abba Kyari, drafted operatives at its Osun annexe to investigate the case.

The IRT team, led by Chief Superintendent of Police Bisiriyu Akindele, tracked down one Akinyemi Oyebode who participated in the robbery. While on his trail, detectives intercepted a phone conversation between him and a prison warden. In the conversation, he was heard threatening to expose a prison warder if he fails to pay him some money.

He was grilled after his arrest, during which he made a clean breast that the incident he was talking about was the abduction and killing of Olusegun Fasakin, a 30-year-old hunchback.

Law enforcement agents consequently rounded up those allegedly involved in the crime. The suspects were identified as Akinyemi Oyebode, Jamiu Adeniyi, Isaac Ayandokun (a.k.a. Baba Niyi), Kehinde Oladokun (a.k.a. Alfa), Ojo Taiwo Olasukanmi (a.k.a. Ifa) and Mukaila Kolawole (a.k.a. Baba Beji) who all claimed to be herbalists, and Charles Adebusuiyi, a serving prison warder at the Ilesa Correction Centre.

Presently, all primary suspects, save for the prison warden, have been arrested

The search for a hunchback

Saturday Sun spoke with Akinyemi Oyebode, the suspect originally tracked by IRT operatives.

He alleged that several meetings were held inside the office of Charles Adebusuiyi at Ilesa Correctional Centre.

The 24-year-old, a native of Okemesi in Ekiti State, was a school dropout who trained as a vulcanizer, but has served time in prison, jailed in 2016 after he was found with wraps of Indian hemp during a raid by operatives of National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA). He was released earlier this year after three years behind bar.

His family sought to straighten his life. They bought him a motorcycle so he could earn his daily bread as a commercial bike man. He soon made a lot of customers including the prison officer.

“He was one of my early customers and I normally pick and drop him in front of the prison. One thing led to another and I told him that I have spent about three years in prison. Gradually we became friends and sometimes he will invite me to come and have a drink with him,” he said.

Oyebode insisted they held several meetings in his office at the prison premises.

“This was how I got to know the likes of Alfa, Baba Beji and Ifa who are all herbalists,” he said. “One of the days that I took Charles to Sabo, I overheard them talking about doing rituals to make money. I needed money at that time so I was interested. As soon as Charles came out and we were heading back to town, I told him that I am also interested in what I overheard and he assured me that he will alert me when everything is set. I was so excited especially when he told me that he was going to pay me one million at the end of the deal.”

Oyebode admitted he knew they were going to abduct someone for money ritual only that he was not sure who the target was.

His story threw illumination on the dark deed that took place on the night of September 15.

He narrated: “Few days later Charles called me to come and pick him up that we have an important job. I took him to where his car was. Three other persons were already there. They were not the regular faces that I knew.

“When we got to Igangan Square around 10 pm, he asked us to wait, while he and the three young men went into the neighbourhood. In less than 20 minutes, they came back dragging one tall man with them. The man did not resist or shout; he was just following them like a fool. They put him in the car and drove off. Charles told me not to worry that he would handle everything.”

After waiting for some days and it was clear Charles had no intention to give him any money, Oyebode called up and threatened to tell the police what he was up to.

The warden pacified him with N18, 000.  In the meantime, one of his friends invited him to join a robbery gang.

“We attacked a compound in August and raided the entire flats. I got a big phone which I sold for N16, 000,” he confessed.

That was to be his undoing, as IRT operatives who took charge of the case, tracked him down, for the robbery, and also routinely queried him about his telephone conversation with a “prison warden” he threatened.

With this background, the next logical question is, who commissioned the search for hunchback?

In their various depositions during interrogation, the suspects all claimed they were contracted by a shadowy figure, a medical doctor who promised them millions of naira in return for a real hunchback.

The answer could only come from Mukaila Kolawole, popularly known as Baba Beji. It was he who got the contract from a man whom he claims people know as a medical doctor.

The native of Iragbiji in Osun State earned a livelihood as a farmer. He was, however, jailed in the past for the killing of a hunchback. “I was framed,” he said.

He told Saturday Sun the details.

“In 2009, I was a member of Odua Peoples Congress (OPC). One of our members, known as Muritala, misbehaved and was suspended from the group. He got annoyed and formed his own local vigilante group. They were the ones who attacked a nearby village and abducted a woman with hunchback. We were at a meeting the night her mutilated corpse was found. The Muritala-led vigilante group raised alarm that we were the ones responsible for the murder. About ten of us were arrested that day and charged to court for murder. I was released last year after spending nine years.”

It was during those nine years he met Charles Akinbusuyi.

“He was our warden. He normally ‘dash’ us money. We became friends with him. He assured us that anytime names of those to be helped by government was compiled, he’d make sure my name was included.”

He was part of the inmates granted amnesty by the Chief Justice of Osun State in 2018.

Back to the business of September 15, he continued: “When I regained my freedom, I went back to farming but kept in touch with Charles. One day, he called me that he was tired of depending on monthly salary that he wanted a faster way of making money. He asked me if I knew anyone who is into money ritual and I said yes. I introduced him to some of my friends who were herbalists and they suggested to us different ways that we can make quick money. It was while we were at it that I received a call from my longtime customer and asked if I can help him abduct and kill a man or woman with a hunchback. He offered to pay us millions and I told Charles about it and he agreed to be part of it.”

It turned out that Baba Beji who claimed in the beginning of his confession that he knew nothing about hunchback killers, was the person who assembled the best hands to find a hunchback. “Millions were involved and I know that it is not a one-man thing,” he said. “I alerted my herbalist friends that I know and told them about the contract. Everyone started searching until Charles said that he knows of one in a village called Iwara where he normally goes to consult a native doctor.”

According to him, the prison warden planned the abduction. “Charles agreed to hire boys that will abduct the man,” he claimed. “He is a prison warden so he knows a lot of criminals.”

Kolawole took charge of the second part of the mission. “I assembled my fellow herbalists who would help in the killing and removal of the hump. All of us went to the area, and Charles and three other young men that I assumed are professionals, moved into the compound and asked us to wait. In less than 20 minutes, they came out with a man. The young men left and the rest of us entered the vehicle to an agreed place where we intended to slaughter him.”

Kolawole was the one who delivered the killing stroke. “When we got to a deserted area that night, I brought out my spanner, and because I knew what I came there to do, I quickly hit him on the head and he fell down. When I was sure he was dead, I used a knife to cut out the deformed part of his back.”

“We called Niyi, who is an expert in such things, to come and confirm if it was authentic.”

They received a big blow when the expert arrived and proclaimed the hump not useful because it was not a natural hump but a growth.

“We were disappointed. We had no choice but to discard the body and return to Osogbo.”

While he claimed that he had no idea what exactly the hump of a hunchback is used for, Kolawole admitted he knew native doctors use it to produce charm for wealth. “I heard that if you want good money from everywhere,  that some people used their (hunchback’s) bones to make bathing soap. This is what I heard, maybe doctor [the one who commissioned the job] will explain better.”

Additional information came from Olasukunmi, popularly known as Ifa, who claimed that he was lured into the crime.

“I am a movie producer and I have successfully produced three movies as far back as 2010. During my spare time, I also do herbalist work which I learnt from my father. I am still working on one of my movies when police arrested me,” he stated.

His connection to the group was Akinbusuiyi, the prison warden.

“I knew Charles in prison when I was arrested by the police during a raid. I didn’t spend much time with them before I was released from prison,” he said.

He was present on the killing ground.

He explained his role: “On the day of the incident, I met them at the express. They asked me to help hold the torch because it was late at night, at about 11:30pm. I held the torch while Baba Beji cut him open. I was not the one who killed him.”

Ifa tried to distance himself from the murder, saying: “I am a herbalist and my stock-in-trade is assisting fraudsters to be successful.”

He explained he got entangled in the plot hunchback plot. “Baba Beji came to me and asked if I knew where we could get a man or woman with a hunchback. I told him to leave me alone as I was not into any money ritual. He called me one day to join him and I asked him what it was. He said that one of his friends who can pay very well wants to see me. I thought he was real till we got to the forest,” he narrated.

He tried desperately to justify his role: “I was scared, that was why I joined him. I know how these things work out ––if I don’t join them, they will kill me.”

Baba Niyi is the expert in the group, the man who could identify the hump of a natural hunchback.

He, too, once spent time in Ilesha prison. He was one of the vigilantes that were jailed alongside Baba Ibeji over the killing of a hunchback.

He, also, knew the man who commissioned the job. “I have known the doctor for many years. He normally asked for herbs. This was why he asked me to go and cross-check. I went there and discovered that it was not real,” he said.

Baba Niyi insisted on his innocence. “I did not follow them to kill anyone,” he submitted.

What became of the body?

They claimed the remains was dumped inside the bush along Osun-Ibadan expressway.

The fugitive prison warden

Charles Adebusuiyi, the prison warden, has since vanished into thin air. His office, Nigerian Correctional Services, confirmed no one has seen him at work since  the case broke out. He has been declared wanted by the police.

From others’ confessions, it was he who allegedly contracted the services of the abductors –Emmanuel, Kazeem and another popularly known as MTN –  to go to Igangan and abduct the victim. The three abductors, presently on the run, are suspected criminals who were once inmates at the Ilesa correction al center, where Adebusuiyi was a warden until he became a fugitive.

The victim’s family

Saturday Sun spoke with one of the relatives, Olatunji Fasakin, who was at the police station.

“I am his nephew and we live at Igangan-Ijesa, Osun State,” he introduced himself.

According to him, the family had given up hope of finding when they heard that IRT operatives had cracked the case.

He gave his side of the story thus: “On September 15, 2019, around 6 pm, I left to the forest to hunt. At about 8 pm, my wife called me that they have kidnapped my nephew and urged me to hurry back home. Upon my return, I met his mother and grandmother in tears. They told me four men took him away on a motorcycle. I took my motorcycle and drove towards the direction they were heading. When I got to Iwara junction, the persons that I met said that they have left and that some of the villagers who tried to stop them were beaten up. I returned to the village and reported the matter at Igangan police post.”

Although, some community members who heard of his abduction had rightly deduced that he was picked  because of his hunched back, the family, nonetheless, had hoped his abductors would, in time, call to demand a ransom.

“But they never did,” he said, “When we couldn’t find him, everyone assumed that he was used for money ritual.”

He explained why his cousin was not a natural hunchback: “He had been sick right from birth, the constant ill-health affected his growth and he was no longer walking properly. Anyone that saw him would assume he had a hunchback. He wasn’t a hunchback.”

On how they got the news of the arrest of his abductors and killers, he said: “A family friend at Ayesan police post informed us that it was IRT Osun that arrested them.”

He said the family is still in mourning, stating, “but now we know what really happened to our brother.”

The family pleaded with the police to help them find his remains so that they can give him a befitting burial.

Source: Hunchback hunters

Inside the thriving human body parts market (report from Zimbabwe)

The following article, published by the Sunday Mail in Zimbabwe in late December 2019, is strictly speaking not about ritual killing or a specific ritualistic murder case. However, it has everything to do with the subject: superstition and the use of rituals using human body parts. It is a shocking account of a thriving market for human body parts. The interviews, and apparently also the investigations, have taken place in Zimbabwe, yet there is no reason not to believe that similar practices may be reported from other countries.

As the articles also concludes: ‘In Zimbabwe and other parts of the world, trading in human body parts is illegal.’ Hence, it is up to the government(s) to maintain the law (webmaster FVDK).

Inside the thriving human body parts market

Published: December 29, 2019
By: Sunday Mail, Zimbabwe – Emmanuel Kafe and Simbarashe Manhenda 

Human body parts, according to sources and a pathologist, can also be harvested during post-mortems.

HUMAN body parts, mostly fingers, internal organs and private parts, are being sold by syndicates made up of mortuary attendants and security guards, investigations carried out by The Sunday Mail Society have revealed.

Information gathered revealed that the syndicates are conniving to harvest the body parts from mortuaries without the knowledge of the deceased’s families.

Investigations revealed that the body parts are much sought after and literally cost an arm and leg.

Water used to clean corpses, which is believed to be used in the preparation of juju used in housebreaking, is also in great demand.

As a result of the high demand, the water and body parts are only being sold in foreign currency.

The Sunday Mail Society’s investigations revealed that there is a ready and thriving market for the human body parts and water.

Among those that are acquiring the parts from the morgues are traditional healers, prophets, sex workers, criminals and businesspeople.

Apparently, acquiring human body parts can be as easy as ordering pizza.

A phone call and a little bargaining is all that it takes. After agreeing on a fee, the deal is sealed.

From the interactions with those involved in the illegal and unusual trade, it is clear that the syndicates are making a killing.

After getting a tip-off from a security guard who was once part of the human body parts’ cartel, The Sunday Mail Society crew went underground and pretended to be genuine buyers.

Following the tip-off, we approached one of the security guards manning the premises of a well-established funeral parlour in Harare.

Posing as traditional healers, we enquired from him how we could get certain human body parts.

We also asked about the prices.

The security guard, whom we were later told is paid a “commission” by the mortuary attendants for linking them with buyers, did not even attempt to exercise caution.

Without hesitation, the security guard gladly gave us the mortuary attendant’s contact details, saying his colleague would gladly help us.

After contacting the mortuary attendant, who was expecting our call, a meeting was promptly arranged.

The meeting took place at a local eatery.

From our deliberations with the mortuary attendant, we gathered that human private parts can be sold for as much as US$ 500.

Internal organs such as the heart were pegged at more than US$ 1 500.

The mortuary attendant, who remained composed and relaxed as if he was negotiating the sale of a heifer, explained how the body parts are harvested.

“The parts are mostly removed when the bodies are cleaned in preparation for burial,” he explained, adding that harvesting external body parts was often a challenge since relatives usually inspected the bodies of their departed loved ones.

“However, there is no risk in harvesting internal organs such as the heart and lungs since relatives of the deceased rarely inspect those parts of the body. Those ones are easier to get,” said our source.

In addition, he also said bones and teeth could be “easily obtained’”

But despite that, external organs such as the eyes, breasts and private parts were in great demand.

Also in demand is the water left after washing corpses.

Criminals, among them armed robbers and burglars, are believed to use the water as juju or to induce heavy sleep among house occupants.

According to sources, the water is mixed with juju to produce a concoction which criminals believe will protect them during their escapades

A 500ml bottle of the water was being sold for US$ 200.

It is widely believed that if the water is sprinkled on the door of a targeted house, the victim will fall into a deep slumber, resulting in the robbers ransacking their homes.

Mbuya Alice Nhemachena, a traditional healer, said the water was in great demand.

“The water can be used to make it easier for burglars to steal. Criminal elements can fork out a fortune to get hold of this water. It can also be used to make love potions,” Mbuya Nhemachena said.

Sekuru Friday Chisanyu, another traditional healer, said stealing and selling human body parts is a form witchcraft.

“Some traditional healers tell their clients to bring ‘a warm heart, freshly pulled out of a person’. People who engage such traditional healers want easy money and will end up engaging in ritual murders,” Sekuru Chisanyu said.

“But some people approach us saying they are now being tormented by avenging spirits after buying human body parts,” he said.

So who are the victims in this macabre scam?

According to sources, accident victims are the most common victims of human body parts’ theft.

For accident victims, relatives normally cannot tell whether missing body parts was lost during or after the accident.

Dr Edwin Muguti, a former Deputy Minister of Health and Child Care, said it was possible for one to steal human body parts during a post-mortem.

“It is possible for pathologists, mortuary attendants and security guards to illegally harvest body parts. Such laws as the Human Tissue Act and the Anatomy Act were enacted to deter such practices,” Dr Muguti said.

But Mr Talent Nharara, the operations manager at Foundation Funeral Services, said he was yet to come across such criminal cases.

“I have heard about such things, but I am yet to come across such cases. However, it might be possible for body parts to be harvested during embalming and when the corpse is being washed. The fact that people always talk about this means that such things might be happening,” Mr Nharara said.

The human body is usually washed, embalmed and dressed up in preparation for either burial or cremation.

But according to Mr Nharara, the water used in cleaning corpses is disposed of in a manner which makes it almost impossible for one to collect it for sale.

“The water is disposed of using special drainage pipes. Like I said before, I am yet to come across people who siphon such fluids, but that does not mean that the fluids are not being siphoned off,” added Mr Nharara.

He was, however, not at liberty to reveal exactly how the water is disposed of.

Mr Taka Svosve, Zimbabwe Association of Funeral Assurers’ (Zafa) general manager, said there was much speculation regarding the harvesting of human body parts. “From our investigations, nothing of that sort is happening. Some fraudsters might actually be selling ordinary water, which they claim to have come from mortuaries.”

“Our people are professionals and we make sure that such acts are detected. Just like any other professionals, those that work in morgues adhere to stipulated rules,” Mr Svosve said, adding that there was need for the public to be educated about the role of morticians and undertakers so that society can get to understand how they work.

Zimbabwe Republic Police national spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi said no such reports hadbeen made to the police.

“I cannot comment on that one at the moment. There is need for investigations and verification,” Ass Comm Nyathi said.

In Zimbabwe and other parts of the world, trading in human body parts is illegal.

Source: Inside the thriving human body parts market

Africa Map

‘370 households, 1198 people affected by gassing so far’ – Minister tells Parliament (Zambia)

The recent disturbances in Zambia have given rise to many articles in local, regional and international newspapers. To cite them all would be an impossible task, I will not even attempt it here. Below I reproduce a kind of summary given by Home Affairs Minister Stephen Kampyongo. Of course, I realize that he is a high placed Zambian official (politician) who might be interested in the political correctness of his statement, or having – understandable – political objectives. However, his Ministerial Statement before Parliament provides us with enough elements to be relatively well informed about the recent incidents which occurred in many places and regions of his Southern African country. Besides, it is interesting to note the ‘definition’ of ritual murders which he gives us: ‘(….) I wish to state that the term ritual killing means slaying a human being to appease deity. In short, victims of ritual killing are found with certain body parts missing from them for suspicious ritual use. (…)’  

The article is reproduced here for various reasons. First, it shows the willingness and determination of the Zambian authorities to maintain the law. Secondly, it gives insight in the fear of local people and the reason why mob justice occurs. Furthermore, it establishes – once more – the fact that ritual murders have not been eradicated from Zambian society and, finally, it shows the nowadays complex nature of this phenomenon with the mixture of traditional beliefs, superstition and outright criminal behavior which characterize ritualistic killings, in Zambia as well as other countries.(webmaster FVDK). 

‘370 households, 1198 people affected by gassing so far’ – Home Affairs Minister Stephen Kampyongo

Published: February 20, 2020
By: News Diggers – Mirriam Chabala 

Source: 370 households, 1198 people affected by gassing so far – Minister tells Parley

South Africa: extra court security for Centurion ‘muthi’ murder accused

Muti or ‘muthi’ murders are ritualistic murders committed to enhance one’s prestige, power, wealth or luck. It’s a quite common name for a heinous crime, all over Southern Africa – not only in South Africa. Perpetrators are rarely arrested and prosecuted. Also in the case of the late Maria Skhosana whose lifeless body was found mutilated – case presented below – police was reluctant to intervene. Why? The deceased’s partner, however, insisted, and a suspect was arrested and brought to court to be judged. Read the saga below. At least, the rule of law seems to be applied this time, which unfortunately cannot be taken for granted in South Africa….  (webmaster FVDK).

Photo: Sourced (Bosveld Review)

Extra court security for Centurion ‘muthi’ murder accused
Published: February 6, 2020
By: Centurion Rekord

Extra security had to be deployed at the Pretoria magistrate’s court on Monday as a 27-year-old man accused of a “muthi” murder appeared.

David Kutosi is accused of killing Maria Skhosana (40) and dumping her mutilated body near the Mnandi cemetery in Olievenhoutbosch.

Additional police and security officers were present in the courtroom as a precautionary measure.

This comes after the court was disrupted during Kutosi’s previous appearance by community members screaming slurs and threatening to kill the accused.

This time around, women in the gallery held up their bras in a demonstration during court proceedings.

Kutosi indicated he would not apply for bail.

Violence broke out in the community the week following his arrest, with community members taking to the streets and setting some muthi shops alight.

It was believed that Skhosana was killed as part of a muthi ritual.

Skhosana’s body was found in January more than a month after she had gone missing.

She was four months pregnant when she decided to have an abortion in November and left her home one day to have the procedure performed.

She was, however, not seen alive again.

The matter was moved to another court room for security purposes and postponed to 8 April.

Source: Extra court security for Centurion ‘muthi’ murder accused

Related articles:

‘Muthi’ murder case postponed again
Published: January 28, 2020
By: Centurion Rekord

Thamisanqa Mahlangu at the scene where his partners remains were found. Photo: Ron Sibiya

The murder case of a 27-year-old man accused of killing a woman for muthi has been postponed again.

David Ntosi will appear in the Pretoria magistrate’s court again on 3 February.

Ntosi was arrested a week ago, on allegations that he killed 40-year-old Maria Skhosana, mutilated her body and dumped it near the Mnandi cemetery in Olievenhoutbosch.

He appeared in court on Monday, for an interpreter to be appointed. The case was remanded to allow legal representation to be appointed for him.

Skhosana’s mutilated body was found dumped near a cemetery in Olievenhoutbosch earlier this month, in what was suspected to be a muthi murder.

She was last seen by her family on 27 November last year, and reported missing to the police the next day.

Her partner Thamisanqa Mahlangu told Rekord he had to investigate her disappearance all on his own.

This allegedly included “luring” the suspect as well as taking valuable information to police which they allegedly failed to act on.

Protests flared up in the area following Skhosana’s murder.

Earlier this month, rubber bullets and stun grenades were fired at a group of protesters who were allegedly involved in torching muthi shops in Olievenhoutbosch.

Source: ‘Muthi’ murder case postponed again

And:

Centurion ‘muts’ murder accused appears in court
Published: January 23, 2020
By: Centurion Rekord

David Ntosi was arrested a week ago on suspicion that he killed 40-year-old Maria Skhosana, mutilated her body then dumped it near the Mnandi Cemetery in Olievenhoutbosch.

A 27-year-old man who is accused of killing a woman for muthi appeared in the Pretoria Magistrate’s Court earlier this week.

David Ntosi was arrested a week ago on allegations that he killed 40-year-old Maria Skhosana, mutilated her body and dumped it near the Mnandi Cemetery in Olievenhoutbosch.

Skhosana was last seen by her family on 27 November last year and reported missing to the police the next day.

She was four months pregnant when she decided to have an abortion and had left that day to have the procedure performed, but was never seen again.

The case drew a lot of attention as members of the community filled up the gallery screaming slurs at the accused.

On Sunday rubber bullets and stun grenades were fired at a group of protesters who were allegedly involved in torching muthi shops in Olievenhoutbosch.

Skhosana’s partner Thamisanqa Mahlangu said community members had vowed to support the family during court proceedings.

“This matter hasn’t only affected us as a family, but the entire the community as well,” he said.

“They do not feel safe in their own neighbourhoods.”

He said the Olievenhoutbosch taxi industry has offered free transportation to supporters.

The matter was remanded to 27 January in order to get an interpreter for the accused.

His address was yet to be confirmed in order for him to apply for bail.

Source: Centurion ‘muthi’ murder accused appears in court

And:

Centurion herbal shops torched following ‘muthi’ murder
Published: January 23, 2020
By: Centurion Rekord

Rubber bullets and stun grenades were fired at a group of protesters who were allegedly involved in torching muthi shops in Olievenhoutbosch on Sunday evening.

The protest comes after the body mutilated body of 40-year-old Maria Skhosana was found dumped near the Mnandi cemetery on Wednesday.

Police spokesperson Brigadier Mathapelo Peters said preliminary reports suggest that the incident stemmed from the arrest of a 27-year-old man suspected of being behind the murder of the woman.

“A group of people went on the rampage and raided a number of shops alleged to be selling muthi,” she said

Peters said the group initially started earlier in the day, going into the shops, removing muthi-products and setting them alight, but were dispersed by police.

An even bigger crowd started again later in the evening and attacked and burnt some shops that were part of a chain of stores known to be selling muthi.

“An unconfirmed number of shops were damaged and some set alight,” Peters said.

“The group allegedly became violent and attacked the police nyala and the members responded by firing stun grenades and rubber bullets.”

She said police found another group allegedly looting a shop and arrested four suspects.

Skhosana was last seen by her family on 27 November last year and reported missing to the police the next day.

Her partner Thamisanqa Mahlangu said the woman, who was four months pregnant, had decided to have an abortion and had left that day to have the procedure performed, but never returned.

He previously told Rekord that he believed Maria’s killer lured women to his “surgery” under the pretense of being an abortion specialist, takes their money, kills them and steals their body parts.

“Police must investigate who else he has killed and who are the other people he is working with,” he said.

Source: Centurion herbal shops torched following ‘muthi’ murder

And:

Family devastated after missing woman (40) found mutilated
Published: January 17, 2020
By: Centurion Rekord

Thamisanqa Mahlangu at the scene where his partners remains were found. Photo: Ron Sibiya 

Maria Skhosana’s body was found near the Mnandi cemetery in Olievenhoutbosch .

The family of a 40-year old missing woman is devasted after her body was found dumped near a Cemetery in Olievenhoutbosch on Wednesday.

Maria Skhosana was found mutilated in what is suspected to be a muthi murder.  

Skhosana was last seen by her family on 27 November last year and reported missing to the police the next day.

Her partner Thamisanqa Mahlangu said Maria, who was four months pregnant, had decided to have an abortion and had left that day to have the procedure performed.

“I didn’t agree with her decision, but I couldn’t stop her either. I didn’t even know where she was going to have it done” he said.

“I was in Mpumalanga when I received a call the next day that she had not returned home.”

He said he rushed back to Pretoria to search for her and his first instinct led him to hospitals.

“I thought that maybe she was hospitalised after the procedure, that maybe she may have been bleeding and needed additional attention. But we didn’t find her.”

Weeks went by and Maria was still nowhere to be found.

Mahlangu said the family had even resorted to seeking the help from spiritual leaders, who reassured them that she would be back.

” A week ago, I then searched for all the contact details of abortion places in the area. I contacted one who said they had not treated my partner, but something was not right about him.”

He said he knew something was wrong when the so-called abortion expert asked for a picture of Maria to confirm if he had not in fact treated her.

“Why would he ask for a picture? Would he not know her names and Surname?”

“I pleaded with him to please bring her back, but he insisted that he knew nothing.”

On Sunday Mahlangu received a call from an anonymous person, who said he had information about Maria’s whereabouts.

He said the person told him that Maria was killed.

“He gave me the location of a place where he said the owner was involved in Maria’s murder,” said Mahlangu

“I took this information to the police who were reluctant to help.”

He mobilized members of the community who then followed the information which led them to a muthi shop in extention 21.

“We found a young man who insisted he knew nothing and that he had a boss he worked for. We took him to the police, but he was later released and he wasn’t even interviewed.”

Mahlangu said he and the community members pleaded with the police until they caught the attention of one officer who after following leads  rearrested the same young man.

The father of two said he believed that the young man was using  illegal abortions to lure women into his “surgery” stealing their body parts and then killing them.

Police spokesperson Sergeant Pretty Mokadi confirmed that the 27-year old man was arrested on Monday.

“The suspect then took police to a place where illegal abortions are conducted and a bag full of women underwear was found and burned.” 

“Regarding the muthi killing, at this stage, we cannot confirm as the matter is still investigated,” said Mokadi.

Mahlangu said the family has been struggling to cope and the idea of waiting three more months for Maria’s burial was even more stressful.

“We couldn’t identify her because of how she was badly mutilated. We were told that DNA test would take up to three months,” he said.

“We can’t even sleep at night.”

Maria, a mother of two, was employed as a domestic worker.

“Her birthday on the 16th of December was a very dull one,” Mahlangu said.

Women in the community who did not want to be named said they felt unsafe and targeted.

They called on the police to reopen unsolved missing persons cases to see if they cannot be linked to the suspect.

” How many other women has he killed? Who are the owners of the other underwear found? “

They said they would mobilise other members of the community to raise their concerns with the police.

The 27-year old man is expected to appear in court soon.

Source: Family devastated after missing woman (40) found mutilated

Olievenhoutbosch is a township in Centurion in Gauteng, South Africa.  It is the furthest suburb situated from the Pretoria CBD. Source: Olievenhoutbosch – Wikipedia 
Map of South Africa with City of Tshwane highlighted