Uncle kills seven-year-old twins for rituals in Delta State, flees (Nigeria)

Superstition is a curse. Its spread is like a virus… and it kills… How on earth can one believe that by murdering someone one increases wealth, power or prestige? ‘Money rituals’ in Nigeria cannot be compared to the traditional ritual killings which were performed for the sake of the wellbeing of the community – but which also don’t have a place in a modern society. Taking someone’s life is a crime. And should be punished.
   
Warning: the article below contains graphic details of the gruesome crime (webmaster FVDK)

Uncle kills seven-year-old twins for rituals in Delta, flees

Published: March 28, 2020
By: Punch Nigeria – Afeez Hanafi    

The joy heralding the birth of a child is usually indescribable let alone arrival of twins. That was the feeling seven years ago when Chiagozie and Chidalu Agwunobi, were welcomed to the Oliseh clan in Oko Ogbele Community, Oshimili South Local Government Area of Delta State. They were a bundle of joy to their parents as they grew up happily in months and years.

Few days ago, that joy was blown away like a candle in the wind when they went missing and their dismembered bodies later found in a bush. They were cruelly killed by their uncle, Onuwa Oliseh, who is still at large.

Onuwa reportedly lured the seven-year-old male twins to the bush within the neighbourhood on Friday, March 6, after they returned from school and butchered them. He was said to have removed some of their body parts for money rituals and dumped the remains.

Investigation by operatives of the Inspector-General of Police Intelligence Response Team in the state led to the arrest of Onuwa’s accomplice, Kelvin Uzor, who is also a relation of the twins.

“Police got information that on March 6, the twins were missing from their parents’ house. Their bodies were later found in the bush on March 8 with some parts of their bodies mutilated. Their eyes, hands and private parts were missing. Police began investigation and generated enough intelligence that led to the arrest of Uzor. He confessed that they were a three-man gang and wanted to do money ritual with the body parts,” a senior officer told Saturday PUNCH.

Our correspondent learnt that Onuwa’s younger brother, Iweka, who attended the same school with the twins, told the police that the suspect asked him to lure the deceased from the school.

“I am a primary four pupil of Ekeanya Primary School. On March 6, at about 6.30am, my elder brother Onuwa Ajei Oliseh, asked me if I would go to school and I told him yes. He asked if I can help him bring out the twins from the school before the school closes that day and I told him no because their teacher would not agree.

“That day when I came back from school, I saw my brother place a cutlass on the table where he was eating while I went to the backyard. It was later I heard that the twins were missing and their dead bodies were found in the bush,” he told detectives.

The twins’ father, Agwunobi Oliseh, stated that Onuwa visited his house that Friday in the morning and asked him if they (the twins) would go to school. He said he responded in affirmative, unknown that Onuwa was plotting to kill his beloved kids.

The 52-year-old farmer said when his children returned from school, Onuwa came back and asked them to follow him to the stream in the community.

He said, “I am a traditionalist and a farmer. I’m married with seven kids. My twins were seven years old. On March 6 in the early morning, Onuwa came to my house and inquired if my late children would go to school and I said yes. I later learnt he told his younger brother, Iweka, to help him take my children out of the school premises. He said he wanted to go somewhere with them.

“Later in the day, he went to their school and tried to take them out but he was chased away by their teacher. As soon as they came back, he came to my house and asked them to follow him to the stream. I think they were on their way when he brought out a cutlass and killed them.”

The distraught father, who noted that he and his wife were not around when Onuwa took the twins away, said he was told the suspect ran home with bloodstains.

“According to his brother, he ran back home with his hands stained with blood. He then asked the brother to pour water on his hands while he washed the machete with which he killed the twins. He left for Uzor’s house and both of them went to one Anam.

“It was when I came back later in the day with my wife that I realised the twins were missing. While I was running around, Iweka told me that it was Onuwa who took my children. Onuwa ran away but we were able to find Uzor who told us where their bodies were dumped. We went there and found their mutilated bodies. Their eyes, tongues and hands were removed,” he added.

Uzor, in his statement, admitted the twins were killed for rituals but denied partaking in their murder.

He said one of his friends, called Chukwudi, told him of a traditionalist in Anambra who could help them to perform money rituals with children not above age 12.

The 18-year-old primary school leaver stated that he informed Onuwa, who agreed to the plan.

He said, “I stopped schooling after my primary school education because my parents did not have money. I worked for a farmer called Egwiyo. I served him for many years and he promised to give me money this year. Chukwudi told me there was a place where we could do money rituals in Anambra and he asked if I was interested.

“We later told Onuwa who agreed to do it. I told them I was not interested but if they want to do it, they could go ahead. I told them I would be happy if they succeeded. I was sleeping when Onuwa called me and said he had killed the twins. He said he took their bodies to one native doctor in Delta but the man told him he wasn’t into money rituals.

“He later called me when the heat was much and told me where he dumped the bodies. Now, police said I was the one who killed the twins. Onuwa took the body parts to a herbalist in Aguleri, Anambra.’’

Uzor said immediately he learnt about the twin’s murder, he ran to Anambra where he was tracked down by the police. He added that he gave tacit support for the crime in the hope that he would be given money to buy a car and build a house if it worked out.

He said, “I wanted to become a young chief because most of the young men I know did not work as hard as I did and now they are millionaires. I am a farmer and hardworking but I was not making enough money. I have no savings. That was why I somehow agreed to be part of the plan.

“Onuwa convinced me it was the fastest way to make money and that most of our colleagues made money through that means. My greatest mistake was that I did not inform my family when Onuwa suggested that we should use the twins.

“I love the twins so much and their parents are nice. I cautioned him but I don’t know that he would still go ahead to kill them. They normally went to his house to play; so it was easy for him to take them out without anyone being suspicious. I was not in the bush when he killed them.”

Uzor revealed further that the initial plan was to use an elderly woman in the community for the money ritual but he prevailed on the gang to spare the woman because she was generous.

“Initially, they wanted to use one old woman known as Nne Amaka, but I pleaded with them to leave her because she is nice. If I passed by and begged her for water, she would give me water and even food.

“I feel bad because he betrayed me. I am appealing to young men that money ritual does not pay. I am a hard working man and well known. Even when my name was mentioned in the crime, a lot of people came out to defend me. I am sorry. I want the family to forgive me,” he added.

Saturday PUNCH learnt that the remains of the twins had been deposited at the General Hospital, Igbuzor while IRT detectives led by DCP Abba Kyari had launched a manhunt for the fleeing suspects.

Source: Uncle kills seven-year-old twins for rituals in Delta, flees

Organ trafficking on the rise in Nigeria

The article reproduced below contains some horrifying data. It is being estimated that currently about 1.3 million people are living in slavery in Nigeria. The National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP) has raised an alarm over the increase in organ harvesting in Nigeria. ‘Organ harvesting’ – as it is being called euphemistically – goes hand-in-hand with murder which is often treated as ritualistic murder by police officers. The scaring example of the fate of the ten-month old baby who was rescued recently (see article below) illustrates that law enforcement people as well as ordinary citizens should be vigilant. Moreover, those who order the heinous crimes should be apprehended and put on trial. And – as has been said repeatedly on this site – superstition should be eradicated from society by broad information campaigns and nationwide and universal education (webmaster FVDK).

Organ traffficking on the rise in Nigeria – NAPTIP

Published: March 15, 2020
By: The Nation (Nigeria) –  Grace Obike, Abuja 

The National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP) has raised an alarm over the increase in organ harvesting in the country.

The Director General NAPTIP, Dame Julie Okah-Donli, explained that her agency will be concentrating more on the issue this year.

She said that in the last year, cases of Nigerians being trafficked to countries like Oman, Dubai, Lebanon etc have been on the increase. She said this in Abuja at the grand finale of the Not For Sale Campaign, a human trafficking enlightenment programme.

Okah-Donli added that the agency is considering creating a human trafficking registry that will carry the names and information of people convicted of human trafficking in the country.

Her words, “We don’t believe that the traffickers of persons or migration by Nigerians is reducing because people go to new countries now, so for me the issue of the figures dropping, I am not really sure about it.

I would say that there was a deal made between the EU and Libya to stop immigrants from crossing which is what has led to a reduced number of people taking the Libyan route but not necessarily because the figures are dropping.

“In the last one year, so many cases of people going to new countries, back in the days we did not know of migrations to Oman, Abu-Dhabi, Dubai, Lebanon etc, now there is so much illegal mass recruitment for so-called jobs to these countries and it is really huge but we are doing our best to ensure that we curb it. We are thinking of opening a traffickers’ registry to name and shame traffickers in the country.

“There is this the area that is not often looked into which NAPTIP is looking into addressing this year and it is the area of organ harvesting because people are just getting away with murder.

As long as I am concerned, I have this hunch that a lot of harvesting is going on but unfortunately some law enforcement agencies just rule it as ritual killings.

Last week, a ten-month old baby was rescued, they had taken out one of his eyeballs and they were about to take out the second eye when the two guys were caught.

“The police arrested him and we have been trying to get them to hand them over to us so that we can get to the root of the matter.

I want to know who wants those eye balls, what those eyeballs where meant for and where they were going to. We have to look into this very aggressively and we are going to be concentrating more on them.”

The British High Commissioner to Nigeria, Catriona Laing, said that currently about 1.3 million people are living in slavery in Nigeria.

Her words, “Human trafficking is one of the world’s most horrible global problems and we must all work together to stop this horrible scourge. Nigeria is a country that has particular challenge on modern slavery and human trafficking.

Up to 74% of the population is vulnerable, which is particularly due to poverty, culture, family pressure, peer pressure etc. This has led people especially from Edo and Delta states being vulnerable.

“When Nigeria returned migrants from Libya, it was realised that in 2016, 65% of the migrants in Libya where from Nigeria. We also have to confront the fact that there are up to 1.3 million people living in slavery in Nigeria which is a problem domestically as well.

The campaign has been really successful, reaching out to young people, especially women, and trying to show them there is an alternative. 88% of young women and 93% of family members had a positive reaction to the campaign.

Now we find out that 83% of young women in Edo State nurse starting a business as a huge career option for them. 57% intends to start their business in the next three years while 52% have been involved in training that will help them start a business.”

Source: Organ traffficking on the rise in Nigeria – NAPTIP

Police arrest ritualist gang in Ogun State, Nigeria (television broadcast)

Ritualistic activities and murders have become so common in Nigeria that their occurrence is being announced on television, a strange combination of 20th century technology and medieval superstition and practices. Since protection of the privacy of suspects is unheard of in Nigeria, the nine suspects who were arrested in Ogun State were shown in full glory. The suspects allegedly admitted murdering a women for a ‘money ritual’, notably the leader of the gang, Segun Olaniyi, confessed his role in the crime.

Judge for yourself and watch the television broadcast, by clicking the link mentioned in the Source below (webmaster FVDK).

Police Arrest Ritualist Gang In Ogun State

Screenshot – to watch the broadcast, click the link below (‘Source’)

Published: March 9, 2020
By: Channels Television

Officers of the Inspector General of police intelligence response team in Ogun state have apprehended a gang of nine including herbalists and clerics who admitted to killing a woman for rituals.

Surprisingly, the leader of the gang, Segun Olaniyi who calls himself the ‘devil’, in confessing to the crime also pleads for mercy.

The police say the suspects will face the full wrath of law.

Source: Police Arrest Ritualist Gang In Ogun State

‘We’re promised N5m to deliver ladies’ breasts and hands’, suspects tell police in Niger State (Nigeria)

Published: March 9, 2020
By: The Nation – Justina Asishana, Minna      

THE suspected killers of three female students of College of Education, Minna have been arrested while trying to sell the victims’ body parts.

The suspects, Musa Smart, Ndakolo James and a voodoo priest, Bature Nathaniel, were arrested by police in Niger State at different locations.

The suspects, during their parade at the police headquarters, said they kidnapped and killed the ladies and proceeded to sell their parts to one Musa Smart, who allegedly promised to pay N5 million for the parts.

Two female students of College of Education, Minna, Oladepo Blessing, and Oluwasemilore Mary, were earlier in the year declared missing and although their names were not given, the girls may have been the victims, it was gathered.

One of the suspects, Musa Ndakolo said that they were promised N5 million to get the left breasts and hands of ladies.

He said the voodoo priest had not delivered on the N5m promised even though they had kept their part of the bargain.

“We have killed three girls and removed their breasts and buried their remains in the bush. We gave the parts to the Alfa and Sile who is also part of us but has run away.”

Ndakolo said that he was not involved in the killings, “I was not there when the victims were killed but I was the one keeping vigil at the entrance of the bush and the operation was successful. I did not participate in the killing.”

Another suspect, Musa Smart said that they picked up the students at around 9.30 pm when they were returning from school to their hostel after reading at night.

Police spokesman Wasiu Abiodun said the suspects confessed to killing and mutilating the bodies of their victims for ritual purposes, adding that the suspects also took the police to the place where one of the victims was buried and they found the body which was already decomposing.

Source: We’re promised N5m to deliver ladies’ breasts, hands, suspects tell police

Osun State Assembly okays death penalty for ritual killers and kidnappers (Nigeria)

Recently, on March 2, I posted an article – dated February 26 – on the subject mentioned in the heading: ritual killers and kidnappers who have been found guilty may face the death penalty in Osun State. I added critical comments which I won’t repeat here. Readers are referred my March 2 posting.

Now it has become official. On Tuesday, March 10 the Osun State House of Assembly has passed into law a bill that makes kidnapping, banditry and ritual killing a crime which is punishable by death. Will the capital punishment act as a deterrent? Or will in practice it serve s a means to revenge the heinous crime committed, not more and no less? Only the future will tell. We will follow up on the upcoming events in Osun State (webmaster FVDK).

Osun Assembly okays death penalty for kidnappers 

Speaker Timothy Owoeye

Published: March 11, 2020
By: The Nation – Toba Adedeji, Osogbo 

Osun State House of Assembly has passed into law, a bill prohibiting kidnapping, banditry and ritual killing.

The bill, which was passed into law on Tuesday, was read for the third time, having passed through debates to correct identified grey areas by the committee of the whole of the House of Assembly.

Speaker Timothy Owoeye said that with the passage of the bill, Section 364 of the Criminal Code Cap 38 Law of Osun, which stipulated 10 years for kidnappers, stood repealed and replaced with the death penalty.

He said: “Where the life of the person kidnapped, restrained or seized is lost in the process, the kidnapper(s) is liable on conviction and will be sentenced to death.”

Owoeye said any person who kidnaps another person by any means or instilling fears or tricks or compels another to do anything against his will commits an offence.

Said he: “Where the life of the person kidnapped is lost in the process and the kidnapper is liable on conviction, he or she is to be sentenced to death.

“Not lost in the process, but he is released upon payment of a ransom or performance of a ransom act, the kidnapper is liable on conviction to repay the sum he/she received as ransom and to imprisonment for life and the ransom act shall be reversed.

“Any person who knowingly or willingly allows his premises, building or place belonging to or occupied by him or her and which he has control over to be used for purposes or keeping a kidnapped person, commits an offence and liable on conviction to imprisonment for 15 years and such building shall be forfeited to the government for public use.”

Owoeye said the passed bill will soon be transmitted to Governor Gboyega Oyetola for his assent as soon as administrative processes are completed.

(…….)

Source: Osun Assembly okays death penalty for kidnappers 

Related articles: 

Osun Assembly passes death penalty for kidnappers 

Published: March 11, 2020|
By: Legit – Rahaman Abiola            

  • Osun state assembly has passed the bill seeking to impose the death penalty for kidnappers, bandits and money ritualists
  • The move became necessary in order to tackle the insecurity concern in the southwest state
  • Explaining the mission of the bill, Osun speaker Timothy Owoeye said the kidnappers will be sentenced to death should the victims die

    The war against kidnapping received a massive boost as Osun assembly completed the passing of a bill which will henceforth tackle abduction and ritual killing in the southwest state.

    The assembly passed the bill on Tuesday, March 10, which will also hopefully tackle the cases of banditry in the state, The Nation reports.

    Speaking at the assembly complex after the bill scaled through the legislative hurdle, Osun speaker Timothy Owoeye said any kidnapper found henceforth will be made to face the wrath of the law and be sentenced to death.

Source: Insecurity: Osun Assembly passes death penalty for kidnappers 

And:

Osun assembly okays death penalty for kidnappers, ritualists

Published: March 11, 2020
By: Blueprint

The Osun state House of Assembly has passed into law a bill that makes kidnapping, banditry and ritual killing punishment by death sentance.

The bill, which was passed into law on Tuesday, was read for the third time, having passed through debates to correct identified grey areas by the committee of the whole of the House of Assembly.

Speaking after the passage, the Speaker of the House of Assembly, Timothy Owoeye, said with the passage of the bill, Section 364 of the Criminal Code Cap 38 law of Osun, which stipulated 10 years for kidnappers, stood repealed and replaced with the death penalty.

“Where the life of the person kidnapped, restrained or seized is lost in the process, the kidnapper(s) is liable on conviction and will be sentenced to death.”

“Where the life of the person kidnapped is lost in the process and the kidnapper is liable on conviction, he or she is to be sentenced to death.

“Not lost in the process, but he is released upon payment of a ransom or performance of a ransom act, the kidnapper is liable on conviction to repay the sum he/she received as ransom and to imprisonment for life and the ransom act shall be reversed.

“Any person who knowingly or willingly allows his premises, building or place belonging to or occupied by him or her and which he has control over to be used for purposes or keeping a kidnapped person, commits an offence and liable on conviction to imprisonment for 15 years and such building shall be forfeited to the government for public use.”

Owoeye said any person who kidnaps another person by any means or instilling fears or tricks or compels another to do anything against his will commits an offence.

Owoeye said the passed bill will soon be transmitted to Governor Gboyega Oyetola for his assent as soon as administrative processes are completed.

Source: Osun assembly okays death penalty for kidnappers, ritualists

28-yr-old man in Akwa Ibom State, Nigeria, kills pregnant woman for N50,000 for ritual purposes (2016 article)

While working through old files of ritualistic murder cases I came across this article (below) reporting that – way back in 2016 – a 28-year-old man revealed to the Akwa Ibom State Police Command on how he was hired by a village council leader in Itu Local Government Area to kill a pregnant woman for ritual purposes.

For completeness sake (will I ever realize a complete overview of ritual murders in Nigeria? – I seriously doubt it), I am sharing it here, also to demonstrate that yesterday’s posting wasn’t about an isolated case. Akwa Ibom State, currently the highest oil- and gas-producing state in Nigeria, is a small but densely populated state, with a land area of 7081 km² and a population of over 5 million (webmaster FVDK).

28-yr-old man kills pregnant woman for N50,000

Published: January 14, 2016
By: Vanguard Nigeria – Tom Moses and Chioma Onuegbu

UYO—A 28-year-old man, Edet Stephen Asuquo, yesterday, made revealing statements to the Akwa Ibom State Police Command on how he was hired by a village council leader in Itu Local Government Area to kill a pregnant woman for ritual purposes.

Vanguard gathered that the suspect was arrested by the police on January 11 through the combined efforts of his brother and sister (names withheld) who reported the matter to the police, and the body was found by the police on a plantain farm.

Parading the suspect yesterday at the Akwa Ibom State Police Headquarters, Ikot-Akpanabia, Uyo, state Police Public Relations Officer, PPRO, Cordelia Nwawe, said the suspect who was the victim’s customer, lured her to the market to buy oysters, later took her home to buy more, then killed and hid her body, hoping to harvest the foetus for rituals.

Nwawe said the suspect’s sister, who witnessed the act, reported to her elder brother who later alerted the police.

Suspect’s story

The suspect, Asuquo, told newsmen: “What brought me to the police station is because of the job given to us by a village council chairman. “He paid five of us to kill a pregnant woman so her head and her unborn child would be used for charms. “He said after we have carried out the job, he will give us N50,000 each. He did not give us any advance payment. After we had done the job, my brother became angry. “He said that this is not the kind of job I should have gotten myself involved in. He called my other senior and reported the matter to him.”

Source: 28-yr-old man kills pregnant woman for N50,000

Four nabbed in Akwa Ibom State for beheading woman for ritual purpose (Nigeria)

The following report, see below, is a bit fuzzy but nevertheless I want to share it with you. The chief perpetrator of the heinous act, who was caught, may not have been fully responsible for his deed because of his (unstable) mental state (but this is up to the judges to rule) and not all details are clear or have been confirmed by the authorities, however, the youth who supported the police which led to the arrest of the suspects merits to be applauded. A good example of how it should be – no mob justice, but the rule of law! (webmaster FVDK).

Four nabbed in Akwa Ibom for beheading woman for ritual purpose

Published: March 8, 2020
By:  Vanguard Nigeria – Harris Emanuel

Tragedy struck at the weekend at Oku Abak community in Abak Council Area of Akwa Ibom, as a woman simply identified as Eka Sammy was reportedly beheaded in her farm and the head dumped in front of her house.

Vanguard gathered that the woman fondly called Mma Iko Mbakara was ambushed in her farm while harvesting cassava by a young man, one Lucky Michael from Delta State, working hands in gloves with three others.

An eyewitness account averred that the suspect was caught by the irate youth of the community when he dumped the head of the woman in front of her house and immediately stripped himself naked before taking the youth to the farm where the lifeless body of the woman was found.

One Augustine Ekwere said, ‘’the youth of this village caught him and called on the police after their own assessment. The police then arrested his and his accomplices.

Continuing, Ekwere said the suspect confessed to the crime at Abak Police Station, saying that a prophetess contracted him for a fee of N15, 000 to bring human head for rituals.

According to him, although the suspect did not mention the name of the prophetess, he had already received the cash payment to carry out the dastard acts.

‘’At the Police station, the boy confessed to beheading the woman in the farm because he was paid a N150, 000 by a prophetess to do so. I fear that such crime is coming to my community, my stress and our house’’, he said.

Police Public Relations Officer, Fredrick Nnudam, Chief Superintendent of Police confirmed the incident and applauded the youth of the community for supporting the Police which led to the arrest of the suspect and his cohorts.

The PPRO who did not mention the number of suspects arrested hinted that the matter was being investigated at the Police Headquarters, Ikot Akpanabia, but source informed our reporter that about four suspects were nabbed by the police.

‘’I am in a picture. A woman was beheaded in the farm on Saturday while working there. Some youth joined the police to comb the bush and some suspects were arrested.

‘’I can’t give you the exact figures, but some persons were arrested especially the principal suspect’’, he said. 

On whether the prophetess allegedly said to have masterminded the killing for ritual purpose has been arrested, he said, ‘’as at now information is still sketchy but investigation is ongoing, so, I can’t say if somebody like that is involved.’’

Source: Four nabbed in Akwa Ibom for beheading woman for ritual purpose

Related article:

Suspected ritualists behead 82-year-old woman in Akwa Ibom

Published: March 8, 2020
By: Vanguard Nigeria – Chioba Onuegbu – Uyo

TRAGEDY struck last Saturday in Akwa Ibom state as suspected ritualists behead 82-year-old woman popularly known as Mma Iko Mbakara in Ibesit community in Oruk Anam local government area of the state.

It was gathered that the unsuspecting octogenarian was ambushed in her farm in Ibesit, Oruk Anam while she was harvesting cassava.

A reliable source in Abak local government area who spoke to Vanguard in confidence yesterday said the news of the sad incident filtered through the whole Abak town early Sunday morning.

“Actually the incident happened in Ibesit community in Oruk Anam local government area, but the principal suspect is from Oku Abak, in Abak local government area. I learned that the police have already arrested him and his accomplices. ”

I was told this morning (Sunday morning) that the principal suspect identified as Lucky Michael and his accomplices have been arrested by the police”, he simply added.

An eyewitness identified as Ekwere said Michael was caught by the youths of Oku Abak community who stripped him naked before asking him to take them to the farm where he committed the crime.

Ekwere added that the youths later called the police to arrest him and his accomplices, adding that it was at the Abak Police station that he (Michael) confessed that he was paid the sum of one hundred and fifty thousand naira ( N150,000.00) to bring a human head for ritual.

Contacted, the Police Public Relations Officer in the state, CSP, Frederick Nnudam confirmed the incident, noting that some suspects however have been arrested in connection with the crime.

The PPRO who did not mention the number of suspected arrested said, “The story is true. Some of the suspects have been arrested and the head of the woman was also recovered. “The principal suspect one Lucky Michael was in possession of the head of the 82-year-old woman. The matter is under investigation”

Source: Suspected ritualists behead 82-year-old woman in Akwa Ibom

Map of Nigeria showing Akwa Ibom State

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

Compounded barbarity (Editorial, Nigeria)

A recent Editorial in one of Nigeria’s leading newspapers drew my attention and I would like to share it with you. It is a cry from the heart and corresponds with previous messages which I put on this site. Referring to a recent incident in Edo State, it is about the nonsense of mob justice, it’s illegal nature, and even the damage it causes to the country’s justice system. Read it for yourself. May it contribute to less jungle justice, but – of course and more important – we have to battle the phenomenon of money rituals with all our force and eradicate it from society! (webmaster FVDK). 

Compounded barbarity

Picture from file, not related to described incident

Published: March  6, 2020
By: The Nation (online) – Nigeria (editorial)

Editorial

  • Suspected ritual killers turned victims of jungle justice is cold comfort.  Both outrage jar with civilised 21st century conduct.

It really makes no difference which of the versions of the incident is accurate, whether four or two people were burned alive for allegedly beheading a teenage girl for ritual purposes. The picture of compounded barbarity is clear enough. The girl’s beastly murder attracted jungle justice, but neither of the two is good for society.

According to the Edo State police spokesman, Chidi Nwabuzor, “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.”  But media reports said a mob had set ablaze three men and a woman at Otuo community in the Owan East local government area of the state, on February 24, for their alleged involvement in the murder of a Senior Secondary School 3 pupil of Azama College, Otuo.

The girl’s neighbour was said to have sent her on an errand to get sachet water, and she was allegedly killed and beheaded when she returned with the sachet water. Two of her killers were said to have been caught while trying to dump her headless body somewhere the next day. They were said to have implicated two other collaborators, including a woman described as a native doctor.

By taking the law into their own hands, the mob demonstrated public anger over the increasing cases of ritual killing in the country. But their reaction was extreme. It is noteworthy that they had imposed their own punishment on the suspects, right in front of a police station, which suggested they had lost confidence in the police.

Their action was a recipe for anarchy.   Mob justice not only reflects a negative public perception of the criminal justice system, it also undermines the institution charged with maintaining law and order.  This is yet another instance that shows the low rating of the police by the public, and the need for the police to improve their image by performing professionally.

It is unfortunate that the suspected killers were burned alive, thus making it impossible for the police to investigate the allegation against them. The accusation that they killed the victim for ritual purposes could have been more clearly established through a proper trial.

Sadly, this incident further highlights the troubling issue of money-ritual killing prompted by a get-rich-quick mentality.  The circumstances of the murder suggested it may well have had something to do with money rituals. Only the killers could have explained why they needed the girl’s head, but the beheading followed a familiar pattern of killing associated with money ritualists.

The money-ritual angle says something bad about our society.  Frequent reports of suspected money-ritual killings in the country show a dark side of the society that needs to be urgently corrected. Murder is evil; it is worse when it is connected with a get-rich-quick motive.  The love of money should never be taken to such extremes.

The question is: What drives such a desperate and unconscionable pursuit of riches?  The inadequacies of the socio-economic environment must be a major factor, but these can’t justify a do-or-die approach to getting rich. Money rituals that involve murder signify not only material poverty but also spiritual poverty on the part of the perpetrators.

Improved socio-economic conditions can discourage such an approach to getting the good things of life. That is why the government, in pursuing the greatest good for the greatest number, must pay serious attention to the improvement of the socio-economic conditions. The goal should be to significantly reduce the number of the desperately poor as well as promote enlightenment that makes it unnecessary to seek wealth through money rituals

Kidnappers and ritual killers to face death penalty in Osun State (Nigeria)

Is the capital punishment a justifiable sanction or a sufficient deterrent to ritualistic murders, money rituals, muti murders, or whatever one calls the heinous crimes which ruthless criminals commit to increase their wealth, prestige or power? In Osun State, Nigeria, legislators contemplate to prescribe the death penalty for kidnappers and ritual killers. See the article below.

The United Nations has voted in favor of a moratorium on the death penalty (though Nigeria was among those voting against the resolution). It is to be doubted seriously if the capital punishment serves as a deterrent to ritual killers. Wouldn’t it be more logical and useful to eradicate superstition – which lies at the base of the belief in juju – by providing the necessary education and to create more job opportunities? (webmaster FVDK).

Kidnappers to Face Death Penalty in Osun

The Speaker of Osun State House of Assembly, Hon Timothy Owoeye

Published: February 26, 2020
By: This Day, Nigeria – Yinka Kolawole in Osogbo

The Speaker of Osun State House of Assembly, Hon Timothy Owoeye, yesterday said the state kidnapping and other related crimes (prohibition) bill 2020 would prescribe death penalty for kidnappers and also compliment efforts of the Amotekun Corps when fully inaugurated.

The Speaker at the public hearing on Osun State kidnapping and other related crimes prohibition bill 2020 stated that it is imperative to have an enabling law to ensure quick and diligent prosecution of kidnappers.

Owoeye pointed out that ever since the issue of Amotekun Corps arose, there has been a downward trend in the cases of kidnapping in Osun and other South-western states.

He held that the seveth Assembly under his watch is reviewing the existing laws on kidnapping which recommended that 14 years would be reviewed to death penalty.

The Speaker added that should the bill scale through the needed stages, those caught with human parts and kidnappers whose victims dies in the process of abduction would face death sentence as against imprisonment obtainable before now.

Owoeye noted that with the way kidnapping is becoming lucrative, it is sacrosanct that laws with severe consequences be put in place to protect Nigerians from kidnappers.

According to him, “Ever since the issue of Amotekun came up, I have noticed downward cases of kidnapping in Osun and other South-western states; however I am more afraid of the surge in ritual related cases.

“The country was saddened at the gruesome murder and dismembering of a 23-year-old 400 level LASU student, Favour Oladele, for money ritual purposes. We the Osun people are sadder that the killing took place in Ikoyi town, in our own soil.

“As parents and community leaders, we must begin to re-orientate our young ones on this prevailing get-rich-quick syndrome. There is no shortcut to success, the only way is preparation, hard work, patience and perseverance.”

Also, the Chairman of Osun Civil Society Coalition, Waheed Lawal, has given reasons for government at all levels to re-double their efforts to create job for employable youths, stating that it would go a long way in reducing the crime rate in the country.

Police Community Relations Committee Chairman in the state, Amitolu Shittu, on his own, commended the seventh Assembly for championing the crusade to bring sanity to the society.

Source: Kidnappers to Face Death Penalty in Osun