Published: December 18, 2015 Updated 16:22 GMT By: Reuters
Ritual killings, witch trials go unpunished in Liberia
DAKAR, Dec 18 (Thomson Reuters Foundation) – Liberia must tackle a widespread culture of impunity for perpetrators of ritual killings and trials of ordeal and put its human rights obligations before such traditional practices, the United Nations rights chief said on Friday.
Authorities are reluctant to investigate or prosecute such cases, fearful of a backlash from practitioners and politicians, while some state officials are even part of the secret societies that perform the practices, said a U.N. report.
Women, children, the elderly and the disabled are the main victims of harmful cultural practices, including female genital mutilation (FGM) and initiation into secret societies, it said.
“Criminal offences perpetrated through harmful traditional practices often go unpunished due to their perceived cultural dimensions,” said the joint report from the U.N. Mission in Liberia and Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights.
“This has generated a widespread culture of impunity among traditional actors,” it said.
Liberia’s President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf last month vowed to crack down on those responsible for a rise in ritual killings in the West African nation.
Nine cases of suspected ritualistic killing have been reported to the United Nations since 2012, but local media say there have been at least 10 related murders since this summer. (italics added by the webmaster FVDK).
They occur in some African nations due to a belief that body parts can work magic to obtain success or political power.
It is not yet clear why ritual killings are rising, but the report warned of an increase ahead of national elections in 2017, and some residents have speculated that presidential hopefuls are using black magic to boost their chances.
The report also documented the prevalence of FGM, widely performed by the women’s secret society Sande, and abductions, torture and gang-rapes carried out by the male society Poro.
Many women and children in Liberia are accused of witchcraft, and face “exorcism” rituals, trials by ordeal, expulsion or even death, according to the report.
The trials involve the accused being subjected to pain, such as poison or burning, to determine their innocence or guilt.
“Liberia’s human rights obligations must take precedence over any local practices considered to be ‘cultural’ or ‘traditional’ where such practices are incompatible with human rights,” said U.N. rights chief Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein.
(Reporting By Kieran Guilbert, Editing by Ros Russell; Please credit the Thomson Reuters Foundation, the charitable arm of Thomson Reuters, that covers humanitarian news, women’s rights, trafficking, corruption and climate change. Visit www.trust.org)
Published: March 4, 2019 By: Penelope Paliani-Kamanga – Southern Times
Blantyre – Continued killings of people with albinism in Malawi has made the country unsure of to what to do with the population blaming each other and concerned persons calling on government and the police to seriously do something about it.
The confusion, which has left the country living in fear and on bended knees, comes at a time when 10 people with albinism were recently reported missing amid reports that they may have been abducted. They have been reports of the abduction of a child in Karonga and recently of a teenager in Dedza.
Since November 2014, the number of reported crimes against people with albinism in Malawi has risen to 152 cases, including 25 murders and more than 10 people missing, according to Association of People with Albinism in Malawi. (Italics added by the webmaster FVDK).
Discrimination against people with albinism has been a problem in the past in Malawi and experts had expressed concerned earlier this year that the violence could get worse with the coming May 21 election. Experts called on the government to redouble its efforts and implement all necessary measures to protect people with albinism.
The expected spike around election time is due to the false belief that ritual use of the body parts of people with albinism can bring good luck and political power. This might lead to torture, murder, discrimination and exclusion, including banishment from communities.
Main opposition Malawi Congress Party (MCP) president Lazarus Chakwera, in a recent demand for action, has challenged President Peter Mutharika to put an end to killings and abductions of persons with albinism in the country.
He was speaking at a press conference last week in Lilongwe, following the abduction of a boy with albinism, Goodson Makanjira, 14, of Mphanyama village, traditional authority Chilikumwendo in Dedza.
Chakwera said Mutharika has executive powers to end this barbaric practice but was “sleeping on the job and being a coward”.
“I only have three words for the President; do your job! Stop being a coward and do your job. If you do not end these murders and abductions, you will leave a legacy that will haunt you for the rest of your life.”
Chakwera promised that once voted into power, he will end the abductions and killings within a month.
Chakwera said it was sad that the killings were continuing despite government launching the National Action Plan (NAP) last year to protect those living with albinism.
“I will keep fighting for the rights of our friends. My advice to the President is to act now, use his powers and don’t be afraid of the ‘buyers’, because I know they are there,” he said.
But State House press secretary Mgeme Kalilani, in an interview, described Chakwera’s remarks as a threat to the rule of law and warned him against using the plight of people with albinism for political mileage.
In another demand for action, president of Umodzi Party (UP) one of the parties in the race for the elections, Professor John Chisi, expressed dissatisfaction with the way police were handling albino abductions and killings.
Chisi, who said the situation was pathetic, demanded the resignation of the country’s Inspector General of Police Rodney Jose on the grounds that he had failed to protect people with albinism.
“This issue of albino killings is unacceptable. These are avoidable deaths. The police have failed us, as they have the National Intelligence Bureau but are doing nothing. The Inspector General of Police must conduct a press conference to let us know why they are failing to end the malpractice, if not, he and his people must resign,” said Chisi.
National Coordinator of the Association of Persons with Albinism in Malawi (APAM), Boniface Massah, said in a statement that the refusal to push forward with prosecuting suspects accused of attacking and killing people with albinism has left a persecuted minority on the edge.
Massah said in an interview the government’s failure to conclude cases demonstrated that “security has not improved”, leaving the estimated 10,000-strong community vulnerable and anxious.
“We face a high risk of attack and we have seen government commitment in words, but not in action,” he said.
In a desperate move to tackle this issue, two groups and some concerned citizens have petitioned Malawi’s Ombudsman, Martha Chizuma, to thoroughly investigate the country’s failure to protect persons with albinism.
Specifically APAM, in its petition, wants the Ombudsman to direct President Mutharika to appoint a commission of inquiry and conduct a comprehensive research to trace and identify the alleged source of demand and supply for body parts of PWAs.
Further, APAM also wants Mutharika to seek, as a matter of urgency, international support to conduct investigations, including specialist support for forensic testing and combating human trafficking, to bring perpetrators of these gross human rights abuses to justice.
The petition, signed by APAM president Overstone Kondowe, shows that there are currently 165 cases against PWAs, including 36 concluded cases, 39 cases pending in courts, 79 under investigation and 12 cases closed due to lack of proper evidence.
On the other hand, Federation of Disability Organisations in Malawi (Fedoma) executive director Action Amos said his organisation was concerned that there was no breakthrough in tracing the root cause of the atrocities or markets.
Reads the Fedoma petition: “We are demanding that your office assists with pushing for an establishment of a commission of inquiry. The current technical committee is toothless and won’t bring us any results. We have development partners willing to support the commission of inquiry.
The European Union (EU) has also been one of the organistions that has asked government to do something about the abductions. EU Ambassador Sandra Paesen this week called for serious criminal investigations and coordination among countries to fight abductions and killings of people with albinism.
Paesen said finger pointing will not solve the vice which has left a dent on Malawi.
Albinism is a genetically inherited condition. It often results in the lack of pigmentation in the skin, hair and eyes.
The attacks stem from a belief that body parts belonging to people with albinism contain magical powers.
Mutharika, who has of late been talking tough on atrocities against PWAs, has been blamed for simply making podium rants, with little being done on the ground to stop the vice.
The Malawi government launched a four-year National Action Plan on Persons with Albinism aimed at ending atrocities against persons with albinism, and improving their social welfare. Since 2014, at least 23 PWAs have been killed.
The case reported below is – very likely – the top of the iceberg, as we call it. More than 20 years ago, at least 17 ritual murders were committed in Equatorial Guinea, in only a 3-months period, from August – October 1997. An analysis of these incidents will follow later (the murders may have coincided with elections). We hope that these heinous crimes will have stopped after that date, but there is no indication it really was the case – reporting as such may not be a reliable indicator. For the time being we offer you this case. As soon as we have more to publish we will do (webmaster FVDK).
Published: October 6, 1997 By: Amnesty International
Matías Evung was sentenced to death on 2 October 1997 after being found guilty of a ritual murder. He was accused of removing the eyes, tongue, ears and genitals of a 10-year-old girl he had abducted. He was tried in Bata, the capital ofEquatorial Guinea’s mainland region of Río Muni.
According to official figures, at least 17 ritual murders have been committed in Equatorial Guinea since the beginning of August 1997. The government-owned radio is reported to have said that the death sentence was meant to discourage further killings.
After a recent “savage” killing and the abduction of a one-year-old baby in Malawi, United Nations experts have urged the Government to take immediate action to protect people with albinism and “end the ongoing atrocities”.
“We urge the authorities to step up their investigations into these incidents and bring the perpetrators to justice,” the experts said in a statement on Friday.
People with albinism are born with lighter than normal skin, hair and eye colour, making them sensitive to the sun and bright light. In some communities they are attacked or even killed for their body parts which are erroneously believed to possess magical powers.
Since 2014, 150 cases of killings, attacks and other human rights violations against persons with albinism have been reported in the southeast African nation. (Italics added by the webmaster, FVDK).
Despite various moves to support people with albinism, “the recent attacks demonstrate that the Government needs to redouble its efforts to end the ongoing atrocities,” according to the experts.
“We call on the Government to urgently address the root causes of these attacks and to strengthen nationwide campaigns to raise awareness, conduct robust investigations and prosecutions in all cases, increase protection for victims, and finance and implement all necessary measures,” stressed the experts.
UN experts fear that presidential and legislative elections due to take place in late May, could further aggravate the situation for persons with albinism. Killings and attacks often spike during election periods “because of false beliefs that their body parts can bring good luck and political power when used in witchcraft-related rituals,” the UN human rights experts said.
Some witchcraft practices result in “serious human rights violations”, such as torture, murder, discrimination and exclusion, including banishment from communities, they added.
“These two incidents are part of a larger disturbing pattern in Malawi where ritual killings and egregious human rights violations of the worst kind are instigated specifically against persons with albinism,” they underscored. “The attacks and violations are astonishing in their brutality.”
“We call on the authorities to ensure the deployment of adequate police and law enforcement personnel to protect persons with albinism where they live,” the experts concluded.
The experts also expressed concern at the reported backlog of cases of human rights violations and crimes against persons with albinism, noting that to date, there have been very few prosecutions, giving the impression of impunity.
The United Nations in Malawi is concerned by the continued gruesome attacks on persons with albinism and strongly condemns the savage killing of Yasin Phiri, aged 54, at Kande in Nkhata Bay on the eve of the new year. The UN is also concerned that there has not been progress to trace 12-year old Joseph Kachingwe who went missing on 6th July 2018.
This latest attack and other violations perpetrated against persons with albinism are a setback to the concerted efforts in the protection of people with albinism.
The UN once again calls upon the Government and all relevant stakeholders to redouble their efforts to effect immediate measures to protect persons with albinism as we go towards elections and implement the National Action Plan on Persons with Albinism. The plan addresses the root causes of attacks on persons with albinism, including a nationwide awareness raising campaign, strengthened investigations and prosecutions, together with strengthened protection and victim assistance measures. If these measures are not accelerated, we will continue registering human rights violations against persons with albinism.
We urge the authorities to ensure a prompt, thorough and impartial investigation into the killing of Yasin Phiri, and bring the alleged perpetrators to justice. We further call upon the authorities to fast-track the investigation and prosecution of outstanding cases on violation of rights of persons with albinism to avoid cultivating a culture of impunity in Malawi.
The UN remains committed to supporting the Government and people of Malawi to proactively promote and protect the rights of persons with albinism and ensure their full participation in the protection measures and socio-economic development of the country in an environment free of stigma, discrimination and physical attacks.
Mr. Benoit Thiry United Nations Resident Coordinator a.i. in Malawi
Ms. Ikponwosa Ero (Nigeria) was designated in June 2015 as the first UN Independent Expert on the enjoyment of human rights by persons with albinism. The vision of Ms. Ero’s mandate is driven by the cross-cutting principle of the UN Sustainable development goals: “leaving no one behind…starting with the furthest behind first.” Ms. Ero has over a decade of experience in the research, policy development, and practice of human rights concerning persons with albinism. She has advised organizations and governments around the world on human rights concerning persons with albinism. As the International Advocacy and Legal Officer for Under the Same Sun — an international organization with a focus on albinism — she developed strategic initiatives involving regional and international human rights mechanisms, prepared guiding documents, and oversaw the implementation of recommendations made by the UN and other human rights organizations. Ms Ero is also the author of numerous papers and articles, particularly with regards to applicable legal frameworks as well as the development and implementation of special measures to facilitate the enjoyment of human rights by persons with albinism.
On numerous occasions Liberian leaders have publicly denounced the ritual murders that take place in the country. We can mention President William Tolbert (1971-1980), Gyude Bryant (Chair of the Transitional Government after the Second Civil War, 2003-2006) and President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf (2006-2018). The fact that the presidents Samuel Doe and Charles Taylor were not so outspoken on this subject, certainly not in public, has special reasons……..
The article below on Ellen Johnson Sirleaf’s warning and reaction does not constitute the first and only time that she denounced the phenomenon of ritualistic killings in her country. More on it at a later stage. (Webmaster FVDK)
Published: November 20, 2015 By: The Guardian
Liberia’s president, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, vowed on Thursday to crack down on those responsible for a rise in ritual killings in the west African country as it seeks to emerge from the shadow of an Ebola epidemic.
In some areas of central Africa, body parts are prized for their supernatural powers and are used in black magic ceremonies. Local media have reported at least 10 related murders in Liberia in the past few months. (Italics added by the webmaster, FVDK).
Johnson Sirleaf said in a speech: “We are witnessing the rise in what appears to be ritualistic killings and armed robbery in the country, thus threatening our security.”
“I am instructing the security forces to rigorously enforce the law to the letter and bring this ugly situation under immediate control.”
It is not yet clear why ritual killings are rising and Johnson Sirleaf offered no explanation. Some residents have speculated that presidential hopefuls seeking to replace Johnson Sirleaf when her final term expires in 2017 are using black magic to boost their chances.
Liberia was declared Ebola-free for the second time in September after reporting more than 4,800 deaths but its economy is struggling to recover.
Johnson Sirleaf said in the same speech she would seek to boost power supply and access to electricity and build additional infrastructure in the last two years of her term.
As I continue to say, both on this site and on my website Liberia Past and Present, the phenomenon of ritual killings has never completely disappeared in Liberia. Originally a cultural practice, nowadays it is closely linked to politics, elections and the greed for (more) wealth and power. At this particular moment in time it is not known what the background and linkages are of the ritualistic killings in Sinoe County disclosed here by County Attorney Cllr. J. Adolphus Karnuah. As soon as we learn more about these cases we will come back with the relevant news. (FVDK)
County Attorney for Sinoe Cllr. J. Adolphus Karnuah has disclosed that more women have been caught for ritualistic killings in Sinoe County, southeast Liberia.
Speaking to a team of journalists at the Temple of Justice on Thursday, 24 January, Cllr. Karnuah disclosed that cases of ritualistic killings have topped the docket.
He narrates that six out of 20 women were arrested by police officers, charged and placed behind bars for the alleged crime of ritualistic killings.
Cllr. Karnuah tells the interview that during the police raid, the key perpetrator was arrested, but she was very boastful in her utterances, noting that the matter would end up nowhere.
According to Cllr. Karnuah, the issue of ritualistic killing is said to be taking place in January this year in the district of Numorpor which has its own superintendent and other county officials.
According to him, one of the ritualistic killing incidents took place when the mother of a little boy left him on the farm to go out to fetch some pepper, bitter balls and other food substances for cooking.
He says upon the lady’s arrival, she realized that her son was missing.
Cllr. Karnuah explains that after days of searching without a trace of the missing boy, his father decided to use the help of a herbalist.
The lawyer says upon the father’s return, his wife was said to be part of the crime.
The county attorney says the mother made confession that she was part of the devilish club and it was now time for her to give her own son as a share of her sacrifice. But he says the lady escaped along with three other women who also confessed to be witchcrafts.
He notes that while the women were in the bush, they were pursued by some men in the community who caught and stripped them naked and gang raped them until one of the ladies identified as Wallet Nyenweh was allegedly killed in the process.
The lawyer narrates that during the trial, he ordered the body of the dead woman exhumed in other to prove the alleged gang rape which was said to have caused her death.
As mentioned yesterday (Jan. 21, 2019), technical difficulties prevent me from duplicating here the original article in the Nyasa Times (the webmaster FVDK).
VP Saulos Cilima’s remarks come after unknown assailants (probably on December 31, 2018) killed 54-year old Yassin Kwenda Phiri, a person with albinism who was working as a hospital assistant at Kande Health Center in Nkhata Bay. Chilima’s UTM party has also issued a strongly worded statement condemning the murder. Not surprisingly, Malawi will have elections in the near future, on May 23 of this year. Please also read the related article posted on January 21 on this site: ‘MP Kalindo threatens to reveal syndicate on albino ritual murders’.
Political opponents who throw stones to each other making allegations that have not been proven should be listened to – but they are not necessarily to be believed immediately. One such politician is Mulanje South Member of Parliament Bon Kalindo in Malawi. He was recently arrested in Lilongwe and was charged with two counts of allegedly misconduct and of insulting the president. MP Kalindo alleges his arrest was ‘politically motivated’. A few days after his release from prison – on bail – he was assaulted and severely beaten up.
Kalindo said his arrest has taught him a lot of things including getting to know the syndicate of albino killings. He claims that the albino killings is a syndicate and it involves senior officials with big names hence the need to stop pushing the blame on witch doctors or rituals. “I will come back to reveal everything through this program once my case is settled in court.”, he said. “I have so many revelations to make”, he added. Kalindo made history in Malawi when he led a demonstration in favour of concrete action against perpetrators of attacks on people with albinism, in what was called ‘naked’ march.
We will continue to follow this case (webmaster FVDK).
For technical reasons the original article in the Nyasa Times could not be duplicated. The summary above is based on the Nyasa Times article of January 20 (2019), staying as close as possible to the original text. (Webmaster FVDK)
Published: November 26, 2018 – 7:38 AM By: Emma Amaize
SABA—RESIDENTS of Delta State are enraged at the activities of suspected ritualists and internet fraudsters (Yahoo Yahoo plus boys) who abduct and kill citizens, especially women, make away with their vital organs and panties reportedly for money-making rituals.
There have been alarming cases of attacks and disappearances of persons at Jesse, Sapele, Abraka, Oghara, Ughelli and Warri in recent weeks.
Besides the latest kidnap, killing and harvesting of breasts and tongue of a First Class undergraduate of Delta State University, DELSU, Abraka, Elozino Ogege, which sparked the latest anger, suspected ritualists beheaded a widow at Oghara, the country home of former governor of the state, Chief James Ibori, in a similar manner, recently.
Commissioner of Police, Mr. Muhammad Mustafa, followed up on his promise, last Monday, to track down Elozino’s killers, with reports that at least four suspects, including two Yahoo Yahoo boys, a native doctor and security guard, have been arrested.
Operatives of the Special Armed Robbery Squad, SARS, stormed Effurun, last Monday, and apprehended a native doctor allegedly working with the criminals, while detectives were searching for the fleeing suspects.
PDP, Uduaghan react
Former governor of the state and All Progressives Congress, APC, senatorial candidate in Delta South senatorial district, Dr. Emmanuel Uduaghan, took to his Facebook page, weekend, to bemoan Elozino’s killing, calling on the security agencies to be more alive to enforce the law to stop the menace of Yahoo Yahoo boys, ritualists and cultists.
He said in all the commentaries on the incidents, “there seems to be a consensus that what happened to Elozino is the collective failure of government, parents, uncles, aunties, the church and schools.”
Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, in the state, on Sunday, also called on the Police and other relevant security agencies to unravel the perpetrators.
The party’s Publicity Secretary, Dr. Ifeanyi Osuoza, in a statement, urged the Police to “ensure that adequate security measures are put in place to rid Delta State of the evil menace of ritual killing and other disciples of the dark arts operating anywhere in the state.”
A lawyer and activist, Frank Oseya, said: “Majority is of the view that it was the handiwork of ritualists masquerading as Yahoo boys.
“A minority is of the view it could be politicians, since we are in election season and the fetish ones are on the prowl to renew their ‘black power’.
“Ritual killings have become very rampant in recent times, coinciding with a worrisome upsurge in the number of very young boys riding in very expensive cars, building mansions and flaunting unexplainable wealth.”
The suspects almost deceived me—Lawyer
Human rights activist and lawyer, Maxwell Ogedegbe, who rejected a brief from some accomplices in the Elozino murder after he found out that they were Yahoo boys, said they almost misled him by accusing SARS of unprofessional conduct.
Ogedegbe said when he called Commissioner Mustafa, who requested him to get in touch with the officer in charge, SARS, he got a true picture of things.
Nigeria: Delta State Governor Okowa orders crackdown on ‘Yahoo Boys’, condoles with Ogege’s family
Published: November 26, 2018 – 8:47 AM By: Vanguard Nigeria
Delta State Governor, Senator Ifeanyi Okowa on Monday condoled with the family of Miss Elozino Ogege, a 300 level student of Mass Communication Department, Delta State University, (DELSU), Abraka who was brutally murdered by suspected ritualists masquerading as “Yahoo boys”.
Governor Okowa who was greatly distraught by the sad development has ordered a serious crackdown on all “Yahoo boys”, ritualists and all those involved in unexplainable and sudden wealth in the state.
In a statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Mr Charles Aniagwu in Asaba on Monday, the Governor expressed his heartfelt condolences to the family, the Isoko nation and the Delta State University Abraka community.
The Governor notes with serious concern and worry, the increasing and disturbing activities of suspected ritual killers and criminally minded individuals, whose obtrusive and flamboyant escapades are becoming more conspicuous.
“On behalf of the government and people of Delta State, It is with a heavy heart that i write to express our profound commiserations to the family of Miss Elozino Ogege, the Isoko nation, her friends, both within and outside the University community”.
“I am glad that the security agencies have made serious progress in the investigation into the murder and i can assure Deltans and Nigerians that justice will be served on the perpetrators of this dastard act.
The Governor appreciates the solidarity exhibited by Deltans and Nigerians in condemning the bizarre act and urged security agencies in the state and country to commence a massive crackdown on these criminal elements veneering as “Yahoo Boys”.
“As a government whose primary responsibility is the protection of lives and property as well as the welfare of her citizens, i urge Deltans and Nigerians to partner with the government and report to security agencies the activities of these gangs with a view to asistting the society get rid of such dangerous groups. Never again as a people shall we condone the activities of these known criminals as we all seem to agree that “enough is enough”.
“May the soul of Miss Elozino Ogege and all those who lost their lives in similar circumstances find eternal rest in the bosom of God Almighty,” the governor wrote.
Nigeria: Outrage in Delta State over killings, abductions by suspected ritualists, Yahoo Yahoo boys
Published: November 25, 2018 – 12:47 PM By: Emma Amaize
ASABA- RESIDENTS of Delta State are enraged at the activities of suspected ritualists and “Yahoo Yahoo boys,” who abduct and kill citizens, especially the female folk, make away with their vital organs and panties for moneymaking rituals.
There have been alarming attacks and disappearances of unsuspecting victims at Jesse, Oghara Sapele, Abraka, Oghara, Ughelli and Warri in recent weeks.
Besides the latest kidnap, killing and stealing of breasts and tongue of a first- class undergraduate of Delta State University, DELSU, Abraka, Elozino Ogege , which sparked the latest anger, suspected ritualists beheaded a widow at Oghara, the country home of former governor of the state, Chief James Ibori, in a similar manner, recently.
Elozino’s killing was very pathetic for they abducted and whisked her to a hideout where they dismembered her despite her fervent cry for mercy.
However, Commissioner of Police, Mr. Muhammad Mustafa, followed up on his promise, last Monday, to track down the killers of Elozino with reports that at least four suspects, including two Yahoo boys, a native doctor and security guard have been arrested.
Operatives of the Special Armed Robbery Squad, SARS stormed Effurun, last Monday, and apprehended a native doctor allegedly working with the criminals, while detectives were combing for the fleeing suspects.
Former governor of the state and All Progressives Congress, APC, senatorial candidate in Delta South senatorial district, Dr. Emmanuel Uduaghan, took to his Face Book page, weekend, to bemoan the dastard killing of Elozino, calling on the security agencies to be more alive to enforce the law to stop the menace of Yahoo Yahoo boys, ritualists and cultists.
He said in all the commentaries on the dastardly act, “There seems to be a consensus that what happened to Elozino in the hands of ritualists is a collective failure of government, parents, uncles, aunties, the church, schools.”
The Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, in the state, on Sunday, also called on the police and other relevant security agencies to unravel the perpetrators of this terrible act bring them to book.
Publicity secretary, Dr. Ifeanyi Osuoza, in a statement, urged the police to “ensure that adequate security measures are put in place henceforth to rid the entire Delta state of the evil menace of ritual killers and other disciples of the darks arts operating anywhere in the state.”
“The brazen way and manner surrounding the abduction and subsequent murder of Miss Ogege and the subsequent discovery of her mutilated and decomposing remains, suggests that a throbbing yet frightening cartel of ritual killers and diabolic groups of cultist, is possibly thriving and operating unhindered and with conniving complicity of the town folks of the communities,” the party said.
A lawyer and activist, Frank Oseya, said, “Majority opinion is of the view that it was the handiwork of money ritualists masquerading as yahoo boys. Minority is of the view that it this could be politicians at work since we are in election season and the fetish ones are on the prowl to renew their ‘black power’.”
“Ritual killings have become very rampant in recent times, coinciding with a worrisome upsurge in the number of very small boys riding in very expensive cars, building mansions and flaunting unexplainable wealth,” he said.
Oseya blamed parents who flaunt their yahoo children’s illicit wealth without questioning, government that provided no job for the teeming unemployed for the madness.
Human rights activist and lawyer, Maxwell Ogedegbe, who rejected a brief from some accomplices in Elozino murder after he found out that they were yahoo boys, said they almost misled him by accusing SARS of operatives of unprofessional conduct.
Ogedegbe said it was when he called Commissioner Mustafa, who requested him to get in touch with the Officer in charge, SARS, that he got the true picture of things.
Published: November 22, 2018 – 8:10 AM By: Vanguard Nigeria
The Academic Staff Union of Universities, Delta State University, Abraka Branch (ASUU-DELSU) has raised alarm over the activities of ritual killers in the University town, and especially condemned the recent killing of Elozino Joshuala Ogege, a 300 level student of Mass Communication.
In a statement jointly signed by the Branch Chairman, Professor Abel Diakparomre and Secretary, Dr. Emmanuel Ufuophu-Biri, the Union condemned the abduction and subsequent murder of Miss Ogege.
While the Union commends the speedy response of the University, the Police and other security agencies to the report of Miss Ogege’s disappearance and their final unraveling of the young lady’s fate and apprehension of dastardly act, the Union, in its statement called on the State Government, Security Agencies and the Abraka Community to synergize efforts to keep Abraka free of criminality.
The Union noted that the Delta State University, over her short period of existence has become a reputable institution and one of the most sought after universities in Nigeria. The Union thus called on all relevant agencies not to allow the University’s name to be tarnished by criminal elements who now brazenly identify themselves as “yahoo boys”.
The Union leaders added that the surging criminality in the town does not only pose danger to the students and staff of the University and other residents of the town but is also a slur to the entire image of the State and the Nation. ASUU-DELSU while sympathizing with the parents of Elozino and the Mass Communication Department, described the death of the First Class student as an irreparable loss.
It would be recalled that Miss Ogege was declared missing last Thursday but concerted effort by the Police and the Delta State University authority led to the arrest of a key suspect at Abraka. The suspect later made confessional statements at the Police headquarters that led to the arrest of two other suspected “yahoo boys” with whom the first arrested suspect allegedly murdered Miss Ogege.