Inside the world of Nigeria’s deadly money ritualists where human parts are traded like commodities (Part II)

I am flabbergasted after reading this investigative report of a courageous reporter who posed as a desperate internet fraudster who wants to ‘get-rich-quick’ by contacting herbalists tracked online. Her experiences are recommended reading!

It is hard to believe this happens in real life. Judge for yourself.
(webmaster FVDK)

Inside the world of Nigeria’s deadly money ritualists where human parts are traded like commodities (Part II)

Collage of Promise Oyewole’s (Ifa Tunde) BVN image and image obtained during WhatsApp callM

The craze for getting stupendously rich through the senseless killing of humans for rituals has reached an alarming crescendo in Nigeria. The phenomenon has thrown families of victims into untold anguish. For two months, posing as a desperate internet fraudster searching for mystical means to acquire wealth, our correspondent using the pseudonym, SEGUN ADESINA, met with herbalists tracked online for help

Published: May 14, 2022
By: Special reporters – Punch, Nigeria

Ifatunde’s identity unveiled

That same day, our correspondent set out for the agreed meeting point after receiving several calls from someone that claimed to be Promise, Ifatunde’s son.

At Ipeba, for safety reasons, our correspondent waited for Promise inside the commercial bus that conveyed him there, as he had yet to arrive. This move was pre-arranged with the bus driver before leaving the park.

After a while, a young man descended from a bike and moved toward the bus after scanning his surroundings suspiciously.

After locating our correspondent through repeated calls, he introduced himself as a 19-year-old Promise and demanded N20,000.

With his facial expression changing from that of shock to confusion when our correspondent refused to give him the money, he quickly hopped on the bike that brought him, which all the while was parked at a relatively safe distance and disappeared into a bush track. A frustrated Ifatunde would later call to ask why the money was not given to his son. He was told that the money would only be sent if the herbalist revealed his face via a WhatsApp video call.

Desperate to collect the last tranche of payment, Ifatunde agreed but insisted that our correspondent’s camera must be switched off.

At the agreed time, as soon as our correspondent initiated the video call and Ifatunde’s face became visible, a screenshot was quickly obtained.

When PUNCH Investigations compared the face captured with the one obtained from a source that carried out an independent background check on the Bank Verification Number of the account provided for the transaction, it was a match.

The 19-year-old Promise Oyewole, whom the old herbalist claimed was his son, was the manipulative voice behind the scene all the while.

When confronted with PUNCH Investigation’s findings, Ifatunde, still pretending to be an old man, vehemently denied being the same person and curiously asked, “How did you get the picture of my son?”

When he was told to refund the N30,000 paid for the money ritual or risk being arrested by the police, he went into an angry tirade and said, “I didn’t force you to bring the money. Even when we got to the police station, they would ask if I came to your house to collect it. They will also ask what you paid for. I am sure you can’t tell them you wanted to do money rituals.

“If you want to collect your money, I will send it, but you will have to be patient until I get another customer that needs the same ingredients.”

As of the time this report was published, Ifatunde had yet to make any refund and refused to pick up our correspondent’s calls.

Yet another

Still wanting to explore the murky waters of money rituals, PUNCH Investigations approached Fayemi Fafunke, another Facebook user posing as a herbalist.

Like others, he advertised his skilled ability at money-making rituals and was deft at using proverbs. He also sounded like an old man when a call was sent to him with a number found on his post. After our correspondent told him about his experiences with the two other herbalists, he was quick to condemn their actions.

However, PUNCH Investigations would later discover that he was no different.

When asked how much it would cost to prepare the ‘Osole Gbigbona’ money ritual, Fafunke said, “We have different types, and they range from N20,000 to N100,000. It depends on you.

“The one that would be prepared with human parts will cost you N100, 000. You will get a good result within a week. You can ask for a refund if nothing happens.”

When told that the amount available for the money ritual was N30, 000, Fafunke grudgingly accepted the amount.

It was agreed that an initial deposit of N10,000 would be paid to procure the items needed for the charm. At the same time, the balance of N20,000 would be brought by our correspondent to Ilaka, an area in Oyo State, to collect the charm.

Surprisingly, not long after N10,000 was transferred into a bank account provided by Fafunke, he called the next day to demand another N10,000.

Items bought by Ifatunde for the money-making ritual

“Things are now very expensive,” he claimed, adding, “In fact, when I got to where I would get the human parts, I was charged N18,000. You have to send N10, 000.”

When reminded of his earlier promise not to demand any additional money, Fafunke became furious and told our correspondent to send his account details for a refund.

An hour after the account details were forwarded, the herbalist called back and, in a calm tone, requested N5,000.

Fafunke said, “I want to help, and it’s for your own good. You can send N5,000. I am still in the market,” he said.

When our correspondent insisted on a refund, Fafunke claimed he had purchased some items already.

“So, what do you want me to do with what I have bought,” he asked and disconnected the call.

Since then, every attempt to reach the herbalist has proved abortive, and no refund has been made.

Human lives and sanctity violated

These encounters are just a glimpse into how individuals violate the sanctity and sacredness of human lives to carry out money rituals for an alarmingly increasing number of people (majorly young) possessed by a get-rich-quick syndrome.

Based on widespread reports, such adventures always have sad endings.

Despite dire consequences known to be associated with such actions, which include sudden loss of senses, loss of lives, including that of loved ones, loss of limbs, blindness, sleeplessness, and loss of properties, among other things, they are undeterred.

No week passes without the media reeling out graphic, horrifying activities of those caught with fresh or decomposing human parts or of mutilated bodies discovered in hotels or dismembered, with most victims being declared missing earlier.

While there has been glaring evidence and confessional statements from those arrested in possession of human parts or involved in the actual killing, linking their intent to ritual purposes, some victims have been suspected of being killed due to circumstances surrounding their demise for such purpose.

Distressing statistics

The menace, going by reports, is not peculiar to any region of the country, even though some have gained notoriety lately.

A report by the Foundation for Partnership Initiatives in the Niger Delta revealed that an estimated150 women and girls were killed for ritual purposes between January 2018 and December 2021 in the Niger Delta region of the country.

“Recent incidents also indicate an upsurge in targeted killings of women and girls for ritual purposes in the region, particularly in Cross River, Delta, and Imo States. In January 2022, for example, more than 10 girls were reportedly killed for rituals in Ogoja town, Cross River State. Some vital organs of the victims were allegedly harvested,” it stated.

The report, among other cases highlighted, revealed an attempt by a young man to kill his mother for ritual purposes in Owerri, the Imo State capital, and the killing of an 80-year old woman who had her body parts harvested for ritual purposes in Olomoro town, Isoko South Local Government Area, Delta State on February 7, 2022.

Hotbeds for ritual killings

Although the data only captured states in the Niger Delta, media reports indicated that the phenomenon had become endemic in states such as Oyo, Ogun, and Lagos.

Recall that several drainage tunnels were discovered to be used by ritualists in Lagos, while in Oyo State, the activities of ritual killers became known in March 2014, when a slaughter slab was uncovered in Soka, a few metres from the popular Lagos-Ibadan Expressway.

The abandoned building was initially a traditional treatment centre for mentally ill people.

A raid on the den by the Oyo State Police Command led to the rescue of malnourished victims meant for the slaughter slab and uncovered mutilated body parts of victims and decaying corpses.

Eight years after the sordid discovery, the business of abducting, killing, harvesting, and selling human parts for ritual purposes still thrives in Ibadan, PUNCH Investigations revealed.

This claim was mainly validated with the conversation and aborted transaction with Oladipupo, the Ibadan-based herbalist.

Money-making charms strange

While speaking with PUNCH Investigations, Dr Ajibola Olosun, a traditionalist, decried the alarming trend. The sexagenarian, who said he succeeded his father, Baba Olosun of Osogbo, in 1977, revealed that young internet fraudsters usually approach him with mouth-watering offers for money rituals but that he always declines.

“These Yahoo boys are not ashamed and don’t hide what they do. I am surprised because these recent developments are strange. Our forefathers don’t bequeath charms to just anybody. My father, the late Olosun of Osogbo, warned us against preparing charms for fraudsters and robbers,” he said.

On the rising use of human parts for money rituals, Ajibola, who is also a law student, told our correspondent at the Ifetedo campus of the Osun State University, where he is studying, that those killing for money rituals were not traditionalists.

“Those killing for money rituals are not traditionalists because the tradition has ethics and taboos. Ifa asks us to pray every day, how then do you do evil and keep praying? Yoruba tradition does not support such evil,” he said.

He, however, said, “Sometimes, we can use bones of the dead for rituals, but it’s not fresh ones. Maybe when you see a human bone after erosion must have washed it to the surface, you can pick it up and keep it for use. In fact, we are not allowed to exhume dead bodies.”

In the background of claims by Ifatunde, the Ibadan-based herbalist who said that traditionalists preparing money charms are not meant to meet with a client, Ajibola said in Yoruba tradition, transactions must be transparent.

“Why would he not meet with his client? I have not heard it in my life. You have to know the person you are dealing with when it involves money.

“Some taboos associated with such charm might be that a woman should not touch it or that the charm must not touch the ground. Others might require a naira note to be placed underneath,” he clarified.

All money rituals have dire consequences

The traditionalist warned that money rituals have rebounding consequences.

“My fear is that some of these things have repercussions. Some of these Yahoo boys run mad because Osole Gbigbona, requires sacrifices, and it has an expiry date. When it expires, no one can predict the repercussions. It’s like a give and take arrangement,” he warned.

Ajibola said it might be difficult to curb the excesses of individuals like Oladipupo because they are not under any recognised body.

He then advocated education as a viable tool to curb ritual killings and money rituals.

A country’s weak fight against money ritual

Embarrassed by the global outcry over the rising trend in Nigeria, especially with enthusiasts, mostly teenagers, claiming to have carried out ritual murder or taken an interest in money rituals after watching a series of trending videos online, the Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, said steps would be taken to ensure the responsible use of social media. He also said national awareness would be raised against the scourge.

He said, “For those who may still be in doubt, ritual killings have assumed a worrisome dimension in recent years. Recently, in Ogun State, four young men, one of whom is 18 years old, murdered their 20-year-old female friend for money rituals.

“One of them said they learnt about using human parts for money rituals from social media. Of course, you are also aware of a case involving a female student of the University of Jos, allegedly killed by her boyfriend for ritual purposes. These killings have been widely reported by the media.”

However, based on PUNCH Investigation’s findings, nothing beyond the categorical statement had been done by the Federal Government.

Five ritual cases reported in six months —Police

The spokesperson for the Nigerian Police Force, Muyiwa Adejobi, while speaking with PUNCH Investigations, revealed that cases of money rituals were rampant in the South West.

He said, “In other parts of the county, we just have some isolated cases. In the South West, the state that has recorded the highest number is Ogun. Within six months, we recorded almost five cases in the region. Fifteen suspects were arrested, and almost all of them confessed to the crime. They have been charged to court.”

Adejobi advised parents not to entrust their children to strangers or estranged friends, adding that the police had embarked on enlightenment programmes, especially in schools to curb the menace.

“Be careful. Don’t just keep your children in neighbours’ hands,” he warned.

How ritual killers operate —Amotekun

The Oyo State Commandant, Western Nigeria Security Network, code named Amotekun, Col. Olayinka Olayanju (retd), revealed that three groups involved in human parts sales were arrested within two years of its operation.

He revealed that those into money rituals had targets and could trail their victims for some time.

“They know the identity of their victims and sometimes can trace the body of a dead victim to the burial site and have it exhumed to remove the part needed or take the whole body.

“Some will kill physically and extract the part they want for ritual purposes. As for those that sell, some people patronise them, but I don’t know much about that. They will only tell you they have lots of clients.”

PUNCH Investigations gathered from the retired military chief that most of those patronising body parts merchants are affluent.

“People now call it Yahoo Plus, no longer Yahoo Yahoo. It’s purely money rituals and what they use are human parts,” he added.

Slow justice system

On the challenges faced by the outfit in arresting and prosecuting suspected ritual killers, Olayinka complained about the slow justice system and the friction with the police.

The Amotekun boss said that while some were being tried by the police, others were prosecuted by the Oyo State Directorate of Public Prosecution.

“We arrested a suspect and handed him over to the police, but he was returned to us. The police claimed that we didn’t follow proper procedure. We approached the DPP and threatened to release the suspect.

“He (suspect) actually killed a 73-year-old man. The DPP took it up, and he has been remanded in Abolongo prison pending when the case would be charged to court,” he said.

Olayinka called for better synergy between the police and Amotekun corps to succeed in the fight against ritual killings.

Oyo State upholds prosecution –Oyo AG

The Oyo State Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice, Prof. Oyelowo Oyewo, said the state upholds the law when it comes to prosecuting ritual killers, adding that the DPP has not failed to wield prosecutorial powers when necessary.

“Investigations and prosecution are not the sole prerogatives of the Ministry of Justice. It is the police that will arrest, and we will write a legal opinion on whether there is enough evidence,” he added.

Our members not ritualists —OPC reacts

When contacted, the Chairman, Oodua People’s Congress, Oyo State chapter, Rotimi Olumo, denied the alleged involvement of its members in ritual killings or human body parts sales.

“The OPC, led by Iba Gani Adams, is only concerned about the security of the people,” he told our correspondent.

Psychologist harps on empowerment

A clinical psychologist, Olawumi Oluwatosin, attributed the trend to unpleasant childhood or life experiences, peer pressure, and mid-life expectations.

She recommended that empowerment programmes should be part of incentives through which the government can curb the menace.

Oluwatosin stated, “It might be difficult to convince a person already exposed to large amounts of money, rituals, and other bad things, except to replace the pleasure, which is money, with something else. But it can be done by probably providing an alternative source of livelihood like empowerment programmes.”

Source: Inside the world of Nigeria’s deadly money ritualists where human parts are traded like commodities (Part II)

Inside the world of Nigeria’s deadly money ritualists where human parts are traded like commodities (Part I)

I am flabbergasted after reading this investigative report of a courageous reporter who posed as a desperate internet fraudster who wants to ‘get-rich-quick’ by contacting herbalists tracked online. Her experiences are amazing!

It is hard to believe this happens in real life. Judge for yourself.
(webmaster FVDK)

Inside the world of Nigeria’s deadly money ritualists where human parts are traded like commodities (Part I)

From the left: Initial preparation as sent by Ifatunde; Ifatunde preparing the money-making charm and Oladipupo

Published: May 13, 2022
By: Segun Adesina – Punch, Nigeria

The craze for getting stupendously rich through the senseless killing of humans for rituals has reached an alarming crescendo in Nigeria. The phenomenon has thrown families of victims into untold anguish. For two months, posing as a desperate internet fraudster searching for mystical means to acquire wealth, our reporter, using the pseudo name, SEGUN ADESINA, met with herbalists tracked online for help

What was uncovered was a frightening, sadistic romance involving young men, voodoo, and traditionalists that are ready markets for booming human parts harvesters.

Oladipupo Olalere looked remarkably fresh for an herbalist. His eyes were fixated on a book of mystics propped on his lap. Not even the presence of a potential customer could distract him. He only managed to nod his head to acknowledge the presence of our correspondent, pointed to a weather-beaten wooden bench and went on to flip through the pages of the book, mumbling inanities.

The 30-year-old plies his trade somewhere inside the densely populated area of Oja-Oba in Ibadan, Oyo State. His shrine is a ramshackle building sandwiched between two old structures with brown corrugated iron sheets. His dimly lit room was littered with fetish objects, mostly wrapped in red cloth. While some were displayed on wooden tables, others thickly coated with dust, hung loosely on the dirt-stained wall. Inside the room, which was crammed with other odd-looking objects, was an area demarcated with a cream cloth.

Staring at the space generated an eerie feeling as it oozed secrecy. From all indications, it was not meant for prying eyes. Before the visit, our correspondent had been in talks with the herbalist, who has over four thousand followers “liking and sharing” his fetish suggestions.

Known as Ifatunde Ifayemi on Facebook, his timeline is littered with adverts beckoning on individuals interested in all manner of charms, especially those that hold great promises for individuals seeking avenues to get rich mysteriously.

With his page, a beehive of interactions, he constantly fed fans with content that boasts his mystical powers and deep-rooted traditional beliefs. With flagrant disregard for identity protection, he flaunts his clients as a way to prove his success rate as a money-ritual guru.

It was from one of his posts that our correspondent got his phone number and began a negotiation that, with time, led to a face-to-face meeting.

Initially, when the conversation was initiated, the picture painted by our correspondent to Oladipupo was one of a frustrated Yahoo boy (Internet fraudster) faced with a life of struggle and lack, and was ready to stake his neck to hit the goldmine through money ritual.

Oladipupo flanked on both sides by two clients

A journey into the mysterious

Excited by the call from not only a new client but one ready to go the whole hog, Oladipupo, with-no-holds barred, revealed and explained coded traditional terminologies, which he said were only known by money ritual underdogs.

PUNCH Investigations gathered from him that various types of money rituals had their attached consequences. Oladipupo said the two in high demand were ‘Osole Gbigbona,’ which required human parts, and ‘Osole Tutu,’ the one prepared with animal parts.

Following promises by our correspondent to ensure a huge return after hitting it big and sensing his desperation, the herbalist voluntarily opted to prepare the ‘Osole Gbigbona’ money ritual.

While still marketing the extraordinary potency of this particular charm, he warned that it would cost quite a lump sum of money. Still, he refused to divulge the amount on the phone. Oladipupo later gave our correspondent an address in Ibadan for a physical meeting to finalise the arrangement.

Meeting days later, Oladipupo ranted about popularly held perceptions on the potency of money rituals and boasted about a sizeable number of Nigerians he had made stupendously rich. The conversation, which was more of a self-advertisement, appeared to be a mind-playing gimmick meant to mentally prepare our correspondent for what was ahead.

He said, “Osole Gbigbona is real. Some are more potent and effective than others. I have done so many money rituals. From Abuja to Abakaliki, I transfer the charms. I have clients abroad and send the charms through courier,” he boasted with a glint in his eyes.

Oladipupo said he relocated to Ibadan from Ogun State because of the huge patronage he enjoys from mostly young Internet fraudsters.

He said, “I have more customers in Ibadan than Ijebu Ode. You know that a prophet is not respected in his own town. I have customers that sometimes lodge in hotels for weeks, and when it’s time to eat the concoction made for them or to collect the charms, they will come to my place. Two friends came to me from Abuja and another from Abakaliki. I posted about them on my timeline,” he said.

A vivid description of the individuals matched some uploaded pictures discovered on his Facebook page by PUNCH Investigations.

The actual cost of money rituals made with human parts

Delving deeper into the mystery, Oladipupo explained what each money ritual entailed and asked our correspondent, “Do you want the one that will yield money immediately or that which would make people start rendering monetary favours to you?

“There is money-making soap that will be prepared for you with parts of a dead body. When bathing with it, the dead body will appear. You may not see the spirit, but you will hear words like ‘give me my head or give me my flesh,’ depending on the part used. The potion prepared with body parts is more potent than those made with the head of lizards or other animals.”

Our correspondent asked for the cost after Oladipupo’s earlier advice to go for the money ritual prepared with human parts due to its efficacy.

Ingredients for rituals bought by Ifatunde.

“Osole Gbigbona will cost you N250, 000. I am offering you this charm at a cheap price. If you can get me the money, you will have so much money within one week. You will see money and become afraid,” he blurted with accompanying incantations.

The herbalist further boasted that the charm prepared with human parts can last for three years, adding, “By the time it expires, you would have made more than enough money.”

Asked if there are accompanying repercussions, Oladipupo answered, “Since you are not the one that killed the person, there won’t be any problem.”

Pretending to be pleased and convinced, our correspondent asked Oladipupo for his bank details, promising to transfer the amount needed for the money ritual once he gets to Lagos.

Surprising ease of obtaining human parts

Before taking his leave, pretending to be worried, our correspondent asked the herbalist how he intended to source the human parts required for the money ritual.

He dismissively answered that he was unaware but later said it could be harvested from accident victims or dead bodies.

After a deep thought, he (herbalist) claimed to also source from herb sellers and “from old members of Oduduwa People Congress.”

In order not to arouse suspicion by probing further, our correspondent left with a promise to transfer the N250,000.

However, three days later, instead of returning with the money, our correspondent called to make an odd urgent request – to procure a human toe for personal reasons.

Without hesitating, Oladipupo promised to contact his supplier and revert back on the price and mode of delivery.

A few minutes later, he called back with the news that the toe could be delivered at any location. He (herbalist) was ready to act as a middle man to broker the deal.

He revealed that it would cost N50,000, but after negotiation, the duo settled for N40,000.

“Once you send money and it is confirmed, I will get it from the supplier and bring it to your place. If you send the money today, I will bring it to Lagos today. My delivery fee is N5,000,” he said.

PUNCH Investigations, however, aborted the mission by not contacting Oladipupo, as it was unclear where the toe would be sourced from.

It is worth noting that the transaction was hinged on an agreement of payment before the supplier would source for it.

After two weeks of silence, the herbalist sent a message to our correspondent to find out why he had yet to hear from him, but he got no response.

Enter Ifatunde, 19-year-old herbalist cum swindler

In Oyo State, Ifatunde, a 19-year-old, who hoodwinked our correspondent into believing he was in his 70s, held sway.

He was the second herbalist that PUNCH Investigations’ search unearthed on Facebook and was contacted via a number advertised on his posts. In what could pass as a veiled attempt to deceive desperate victims, Ifatunde had the ‘Odu Ifa Corpus’ symbol as his profile picture.

However, PUNCH Investigations stumbled on another of his Facebook accounts with another mystical symbol used as a display picture through a WhatsApp number given to our correspondent by the herbalist, which he claimed belonged to his son.

Findings showed that the first Facebook account had 2,140 friends, while the second had 1,000.

He spoke with an unadulterated Ibadan accent in a series of telephone conversations with our correspondent that spanned two weeks. He pretended to be a gruffly old man. He continuously referred to our correspondent as ‘Omo mi’ (my child).

Still sounding like a desperate Internet fraudster, our correspondent reeled out why he needed to become rich. Ifatunde wasted no time boasting that he possessed the ultimate mystical power to conjure wealth and success.

However, his bill was small compared to that of the Ibadan-based herbalist.

“Are you ready for it now?” he asked after days of back and forth on the phone with our correspondent.

“I will charge N95,000 for the one that needs human parts. Since you are 30 years old, there is no problem. If you are not up to a certain age, you cannot use it. Some people that are 19 and 20 years old have approached me, and they got what they wanted. Put your mind at rest,” he said.

After pleading with Ifatunde to reduce the fee, the amount was brought down to N40,000. It was agreed that the amount would be paid in two instalments of N20,000.

The herbalist explained that the deposit would be used to buy the human parts and other items needed to perform a particular sacrifice. At the same time, the balance of N20,000, would be paid once the charm was ready.

“I will do it for you. I hope you won’t be an ingrate because the N40,000 is too small. Do you have the money with you now,” he asked.

However, the money ritual came with a clause – no physical meeting between him and our correspondent until the charm is ready.

“Seeing me would render the charm useless,” he warned.

In what appeared to be a tactic to avoid being traced, Ifatunde requested that the money be transferred to a POS operator, claiming to have issues with his bank account but when our correspondent insisted on paying through a bank or back out, he agreed to send the bank details of his son.

He kept demanding more

After an account with the name Promise Oyewole was sent, the first instalment of N20,000 was paid. However, two days later, Ifa Tunde called to demand an additional N10,000 to purchase ‘essential materials’. He claimed the N20,000 was insufficient and highlighted the dangers of aborting the ritual halfway. The money was sent but with an agreement that only a balance of N10,000 would be paid when the charm was ready.

Surprisingly, the herbalist called the next day to demand another N20,000, to carry out another special sacrifice to fortify the money ritual. He said, “Something appeared to me last night, and I had to suspend the preparation. Before I finish the process, we need to make a sacrifice. I saw something with positive and negative side effects. If the sacrifice is made and you start using the charm, you will get results within three days, but if not, it won’t work.

“It seems that you have been using other charms before now, and they don’t work. I don’t want that to happen again. And you know that there is no way we can perform the sacrifice without money. N20,000 should be enough.”

At this point, it dawned on our correspondent that he could possibly be dealing with an Internet fraudster masquerading as an herbalist.

Our correspondent offered to bring the N20,000 to his shrine, pretending to play along. Still, Ifatunde refused and voiced fears that it portended danger.

He referred to an earlier discussion wherein he warned that the charm forbade any physical meeting with a client. Instead, he proposed sending his son, Promise.

“He would wait for you by the roadside at Ipeba to collect the money,” he said.

Findings by PUNCH Investigations showed that Ipeba is a remote village along the Ogbomoso-Oyo Road.

To be continued

Source: Inside the world of Nigeria’s deadly money ritualists where human parts are traded like commodities (Part I)

Nigeria: what we know about ritual killings for money, Juju priests, Imams, Pastors, others speak

The article below contains a number of interesting views – from various points of view – which throw light on the why and how of ritualistic murders and associated activities in Nigeria, commonly referred to as ‘money rituals’. It also mentions a number of recent ritual murder cases, some of them have been included in previous posts.

Personally I find the statement of a Catholic priest, Fr. Oluoma, perhaps the most convincing, simple as it was. He said that, had killing for money rituals been proven to have any form of potency, juju priests would have been on the World’s Richest Peoples list. Hilarious, simple, and convincing.

But another expert spoken to, the Chief Priest of Aroh Deity in Abagana community, Njikoka Local Government Area, Dr Paul Anieto, said that logic alone cannot explain the whole of life, including the accumulation of wealth.

Without mincing his words he stated that money rituals work. Nevertheless, he was quick to point out that there are various kinds of rituals for wealth.

According to the Aroh Deity Priest, some rituals involve the use of human body parts while others don’t. (…)

The native doctor clearly stated that he does not engage in the kind of money ritual that involves human body parts or blood, because it is criminal. Moreover, he said, it has deadly consequences for everyone involved: the instigator, the perpetrator, and the juju priest who executes the ritual.

Let’s hope he was sincere.
(webmaster FVDK)

What we know about ritual killings for money, Juju priests, Imams, Pastors, others speak

• Money ritual real but there are consequences —Aroh Deity Priest
• If money rituals have potency, juju priests would be on Forbes’ rich list —Fr. Oluoma …
Faulty parenting, poor education, bad governance driving youths to money rituals —Rev. Hayab …
Money rituals promoted by materialistic clerics – Sheikh Nuru Khalid …
Killing for money rituals, haram in Islam —Shi’ite cleric

Published: April 30, 2022
By: Luminous Jannamike, Abuja – Vanguard News, Nigeria

These days, reports of certain killings in Nigeria, where the human body is decapitated and sensitive parts harvested are believed to be for ritual purposes. In some instances, especially, if the motive remains unclear, some people assume they must have been about money-making.

However, other people, including Christian and Muslim clerics, don’t believe in the efficacy of money rituals. By that, they mean there is nowhere in the history of humankind where anybody has made real cash appear through the means of magic. They simply describe such an idea as a mirage.

But the belief in the efficacy of money ritual killings continues to be rife, especially in a society like the Nigerian context where religion and the supernatural appear to be the opium of the people due to bewildering economic hardship and widespread poverty.

Investigations reveal that the ritual killings heighten around December and the year before general elections, because people need money to spend during the annual yuletide celebrations and other financially draining pre-election meetings and rallies.

As the gap between the rich and the poor; the haves and the have-nots widen across the country, the desperation to overcome the expanding class divide propel many citizens, particularly the youth demography to turn to the dark sides of the supernatural with the hope there will be a wealth redistribution in their favour through unseen support.

Recall the recent tragic drama in Ogun State where a 20-year-old lady, Sofiat Kehinde, was gruesomely murdered and her head severed for money ritual by four teenager suspects; Soliu Majekodunmi; 18, Wariz Oladehinde, 18; Abdulgafar Lukman, 19, and Balogun Mustaqeem, 20.

They conspired to kill Kehinde and played different roles in her murder. Her skull was severed in her lover’s( Majekodunmi) room after a passionate round of love-making.

Fortunately, the teenagers were apprehended by security men after they got wind that the boys were engaging in something sinister in a building located at Isale-Ijade, Oke-Aregba area of the State.

That is the nature of the Nigerian society where people, including kids who should be minding their studies and dreaming of a glorious future for themselves are pre-occupied with looking for metaphysical explanations to clarify otherwise simple phenomena of pervasive poverty in the land.

However, while some traditional religion practitioners speak of some fetish rituals some embark on for money-making, religious leaders, especially in Christendom and Islam agree to an extent that although life in general is guided by faith in the invisible, those who pursue wealth through the execution of any form of violent homicide are under an illusion, from a spiritual standpoint, that genuine help will come to them.

One of such clerics is Rev. Fr. Oluoma Chinenye John, a priest of the Catholic Archdiocese of Abuja who commands a following of 689,903 people on Facebook alone.

If money rituals have potency, juju priests would be on Forbes’ rich list — Fr. Oluoma

According to the Catholic priest, had killing for money rituals been proven to have any form of potency, juju priests would have been on the World’s Richest Peoples list.

In an exclusive chat with Saturday Vanguard, he blamed society’s emphasis on material prosperity for the pressure felt by those, particularly youths who resort to voodoo to make money.

Fr. Oluoma also chided fellow preachers who promote the perception that financial “seed-sowing” in religious houses would translate into miracle wealth.

“Two things I want to say are: First, ritual killing for money is an illusion, it doesn’t work. If it did,  the Babalawo (juju priest) who is paid to do the rituals would have done it for himself and be living large. Even the governments would have been using prisoners condemned to death for money rituals instead of wasting their blood by hanging or firing squads. It (money rituals) is an illusion like magic.

“Secondly, preachers of the gospel should stop the prosperity gospel, they should teach people the values of honesty, diligence, generosity and hard work. The emphasis on material prosperity puts pressure on people who resort to any means to make it,” Fr. Oluoma, who shepherds a congregation at St. John Mary Vianney Catholic Church, Trademore Estate, Lugbe Abuja, said.

Faulty parenting, poor education, bad governance leading youths to money rituals —Rev. Hayab

For Rev. John Hayab, the Vice Chairman of the Christian Association of Nigeria in the 19 Northern States and the FCT, nowadays many people including minors seek supernatural solutions to basic economic issues that could be resolved through education and logic partly because of bad leadership and the faulty upbringing of children. 

Speaking with Saturday Vanguard, the vocal preacher who is also the Country Director of Global Peace Foundation in Nigeria, also said people who traffic in stories of how supernatural power has prospered certain people do so largely to further mislead those who find it hard to accept that someone else can succeed through the ethics of hard work, prudence, and sheer ingenuity.

He said, “The way and manner many of our youths are deviating from moral values and embracing evil just to make money are dangerous for a peaceful future. There are many factors responsible for their going into ritual killings to make money instead of pursuing education that will lead them into researching and investing in science and technology.

“Other nations are doing well in these regard because they have laid a good solid foundation for both the educational, moral and spiritual growth of their nation and children.

“The Bible has admonished us to train a child in the way he should go so that when he grows old he will not depart from it (Prov 22: 6). So, what type of training and upbringing are many Nigerian children getting from parents, neighbors, and even leaders?

“Our society celebrates rich people without questioning the source of their wealth. Churches recognise the best-dressed worshippers and members with big cars not minding the source of all they flaunt around.

How will poorly brought-up children not think that money is everything and go after money anyhow just to be recognised and celebrated?

“Our society and our youths will reject the temptation of killing for money when parents bring them up in the fear of God and love for fellow human beings. Everyone should therefore take parenting seriously by helping to raised godly and responsible children.

“Also, the government must help to make sure our teeming youths have an equal opportunity like their counterparts around the world. A country where basic services are not available can make the youths who are not patient want to make money by all means just to afford some basic human needs.

“When you (government) give your youths poor education, they will use their half-baked knowledge to do wrong things. We should lead our youth by example.

“Likewise, faith leaders should preach sermons that will guide the young people right not misleading some of them with wrong definitions of prosperity. Prosperity is not just about having money. A healthy man, contented, and happy doing what he knows best for the glory of God and the good of all humanity even if he has not much cash in his account or pocket is a prosperous person.”

While there appears to be no logical link between wealth and rituals, the rising incidences of gory killings in our society by suspects who got into trouble with the law, because of their desperation for money are worrying and the society must be held to account for the phenomenon.

Money rituals promoted by materialistic clerics —Sheikh Nuru Khalid 

The immediate past Chief Imam of the National Assembly Legislative Quarters’s Jum’mat Mosque, Apo, Abuja, Sheikh Muhammad Nuru Khalid who spoke to Saturday Vanguard from his location in Mecca, Saudi Arabia, where he is currently observing the lesser Hajj, said the society has lost its sense of value; thereby, placing materialism above spirituality.

He also said that the ultimate goal of some people who engage in gruesome murders for money was the acquisition of political power in the country; stressing that greed also forms the basis of such gory killings.

Sheikh Khalid maintained that greed was condemnable not only in Islam, but in other religions.

The Islamic scholar, who also commands a mass following of 138,266 people on Facebook, stated: “We have to acknowledge that our society is in trouble. Values are lost. Gradually, we are becoming a valueless society. We glorify money and other forms of materialism above spirituality which is increasingly becoming absent in the mosques and churches.

“Materialism is taking the place of spiritualism in our preaching and actions, because the Imams and Pastors are less concerned about spiritual things. If you have a lot of money, you can garner a lot of respect in the society.

“Other issues responsible for the mad rush for money rituals are corruption and the get-rich-quick deceit. Our political system is also one of the factors fueling criminality in the form of money rituals, because without money, you don’t have power. People want money to acquire power. So, they are desperate in search money to reach the political position of power.

“But, if you put all these things together, they will tell you why all the religions are against greed.  There are many verses of the Qu’ran and Hadiths of the Holy Prophet, cautioning people to desist from greed. That is why Islam is against inhuman activities that endanger lives, dignity, and the wealth of the common man.

“Above all, we need to do more to bring back the society to its normal sense, because abnormalities are becoming norms in our society.”

There is a telling example of this odd trend of abnormality becoming the norm in the story of 33-year-old  suspected ritualist, Afeez Odusanya, who was arrested by operatives of the Osun State Security Network, codenamed ‘Amotekun’ for extracting teeth of dead bodies at a burial ground.

Odusanya, who said he did it for a money ritual when he was paraded at Amotekun command, Sabo area, Osogbo, disclosed he started his quest for money ritual in 2016 but it failed twice after extracting teeth from two different bodies in Sagamu, Ogun State.

Rather than accept that what he set out to achieve is impossible, the suspected money ritualist doubled down on his exhumation of buried corpse believing it would ultimately succeed if he added this and that to the process.

People like Odusanya have never seen the rituals translate into money or success, but they still attempt it anyway. By killing people, they get drawn into the relatively profitable trade in human body parts. They do not need to see it work; they just need to believe and start relating to the phenomenon as true.

Killing for money rituals, haram in Islam —Shi’ite cleric

But, a leading Muslim cleric of the Shi’ite sect in Sokoto caliphate, Sheikh Sidi Munir, maintains that tampering with the human body for ritual purposes whether efficacious or not is inglorious in Islam.

He, however, noted that the more killing for money ritual is hyped, the more people believe that others participate in it because it is perceived to be efficacious, and the more those who benefit in the trading of human parts oil the demand and supply chain.

In an exclusive interview with Saturday Vanguard, the Islamic cleric said: “In Islam, human dignity is a right given by God to all humans, who are referred to in the Qur’ân as God’s vicegerents on earth.

“Islam grants certain rights to humans before they are even born and others after their death. Whether dead or alive, the human body, created by God in the perfect shape, must be given dignity and respect.

“So, money ritual is condemnable in Islam, and the use of human body parts for making medicine, charms and amulet for any reason is haram (forbidden). It is unlawful in Islam to tamper with a human body, and a Muslim who persists in committing these kinds of rituals will find himself on a path that will eventually lead him into becoming a non-Muslim.”

On how to turn the minds of people, especially the youths from killings for money rituals, Sheikh Munir alluded to one of the Hadiths (traditions) to buttress the need for clerics to keep preaching repentance messages from the pulpits.

He said, “In one of the Hadiths of the Prophet Mohammad (SAW), a man was in the habit of digging up graves to harvest human body parts.

One day, he met a woman in a grave and had sexual intercourse with her. Afterwards, a great calamity befell him. He went to a Mallam who told him he would burn in hell fire, because his predicament was a result of his evil deeds.

“The distressed man seized the Mallam and killed him. Then, he went to another Mallam who told him that if he would repent of his sins, the Almighty God will forgive him and take away his reproach. The evil man turned away from his evil ways and became a good Muslim. So, as clerics, we need to keep preaching repentance always.”

Money ritual is real, but… —Aroh Deity Priest

Meanwhile, the Chief Priest of Aroh Deity in Abagana community, Njikoka Local Government Area, Dr Paul Anieto, told Saturday Vanguard that logic alone cannot explain the whole of life, including the accumulation of wealth.

According to him, to say there is nothing like money rituals is to say there is nothing like mysticism in life. He said that to stretch the logic of that denial, implies that there is nothing like God, because many believe that there is a mystical side to the nature of God.

He explained that there are Christians who believe in the transubstantiation of substances i.e. the transformation of forms, for instance, of the water and the wine into the body and the blood of Jesus Christ once they are consumed in the Holy Communion.

Chief Anieto without mincing his words stated that money rituals work. Nevertheless, he was quick to point out that there are various kinds of rituals for wealth.

According to him, some rituals involve the use of human body parts while others don’t. However, the blood of certain animals like rams, bulls, and birds are required.

The native doctor clearly stated that he does not engage in the kind of money ritual that involves human body parts or blood, because it is not only criminal, but also has deadly repercussions for all the parties – the wealth seeker, his collaborators, and the juju priest who executed the ritual – involved.

Dr Anieto said: “Some ignorant juju priest make use of human beings as sacrificial materials for money rituals and lucky charms. But this is not what the African culture teaches.

“Rituals are basically an intercession between the mundane and the spiritual. It is unfortunate that what we see today are so many committing various forms of dangerous and inhuman acts in the name of money rituals.

“I don’t engage in human money rituals and you can never see any real adherent of Odinnani (Igbo traditional religion) engage in money ritual, because “Ani” forbids the shedding of human blood. Violating this taboo comes with devastating consequences, because all deities in Igbo culture requires tooth-for-tooth and blood-for-blood.

“To accumulate wealth requires hardwork and business acumen. This is what Odinaani teaches but it is unfortunate that today’s youths lack this important virtue. They want to succeed at all costs, not minding who gets hurt in the process. They are ready to kill and sacrifice human beings for money rituals without considering the consequences of their action.

“There is prosperity charm which does not require the use of human beings or human parts but you must first have a mundane source of income to make it work. Do not be deceived into believing that there is a spirit that brings money for anyone out of thin air without a mundane source of income even in odious money rituals where human blood and body parts are involved.”

Psychologist speaks

Above all, a professor of psychology at the University of Lagos (UNILAG), Oni Fagboungbe, said rituals for both money and success exist only in the perception of the people.

He explained that for those who do money ritual, it is their faith that makes the ritual for money work for them and not the incantation or the ritual itself.

To him, it is the law of perception that is at work in cases of successful money rituals. If you perceive a situation as real, it becomes real. That is it. It is not the ritual that brings money, it is their mind and the attachment they give to it.

Fagboungbe decried the spate of ritual killings for money among the youths, and said there are several psychological laws that explain these behaviours.

According to him, “There is the Destalk psychology that says the part can never be better than the whole. The children cannot do something that is not rampant in their country.

“There is also what is called observational learning. This is the most active form of learning. These youths observe what goes on and imbibe it.

“Additionally, the law of effect says any stimulus that brings pleasure will be maximised and the one that brings pain will be minimised. These youth see the society. They see politicians commit crimes and they also see them get out of them and all sort of things. They see how the society eulogise and applaud dubious characters.

“So, there are no deterrent variables available. People do as they like and get away with it. You will hear Yahoo boys say that if they give money to the police, they will be let off the hook.”

While Christian and Muslim religious leaders attempt to undermine the phenomenon of money rituals by appealing to reason and by pointing out how illogical such a belief is, some analysts say that both logic and the law are powerless to serve as the basis of dissuading those who would not be dissuaded from their culturally perception of life and their place in it, because the irrational often trumps the rational in the real world.

Legal prosecution of suspect may have the power to nip in the bud any attempt at senseless killing in the name of seeking wealth, but people will keep believing what they want to believe about the  efficacy of money rituals.

Therefore, to effectively tackle the obnoxious practice of money rituals in the society, the government must entrench the practice of good governance and do all it would take to pull the economy out of the doldrums that has widened the gulf between the rich and the poor in the country.

Ritual killing is real, herbalist speaks too

Additional report

By Evelyn Usman

According to him: ‘ I inherited this trade from my late father. Before he died, he warned me never to indulge in any rituals that involves human blood. He told me that some of his professional colleagues died miserably because they practiced money rituals.

“He also told me one of them lost seven of his children after killing a virgin for money rituals. My job is to prepare concoctions with herbs and soap for cure of diseases that are planted into individuals by wicked people.

“Unfortunately, some of us who do legitimate business in this profession are not rich, when compared to those who are into money rituals.  While they could be paid  between N500,000 and N2 million naira depending on the outcome of the rituals, the legitimate herbalists may die without having N100,000 in bulk .

“Blood is potent for money ritual making. It has several types . But the only thing those patronizing herbalists who practice money rituals don’t know, is that one killing  may never be enough.  Killing  of one person is just the introductory part. As long as the person wants to be rich, he would be sacrificing human beings to renew that evil covenant because the demon in charge of money always requires blood.

“Unfortunately, most people who patronize these herbalists don’t also  know they are destined to  be rich. These herbalists only demand human blood to fast track their predestined wealth”.

Some recent ritual killings —Lagos

A vivid instance was the murder of 24-year-old Precious Okeke,  who just concluded her National Youth Service Corp. The unsuspecting lady had paid a visit to her fiancé ,Maxwell Njoku, at his Ajah , Lagos abode, only for her  decomposing remains to be discovered in the apartment three weeks ago.

Report had it that her supposed fiancé  allegedly killed her for money rituals, with an instruction by his herbalist to keep her body in the apartment for seven days, after which he would  transform into a multimillionaire. Unfortunately, a curious neighbour traced the disturbing stench to the apartment before the expiration of the seven days .Another  bizarre incident occurred  at Araromi Street in the densely populated Oshodi area of Lagos, following the alleged  killing of a mother of five by her husband for money rituals.

In this case, the suspect Sogei Jafairu, who hails from Etsako Central Local  Government Area of Edo state, was suspected to have poisoned his wife’s food  and mistakenly ate it. While his wife did not survive it, he did and reportedly opened up on his deed.

Again in Lagos, One Sherifat Bello  was arrested by the Police after  he confessed to killing his wife and burying her remains in a shallow grave, for money rituals .

Rivers state

This barbaric act assumed a cannibalistic dimension following the arrest of a suspected kidnapper alleged to have killed one of his victims and used his intestines to prepare pepper soup in River State.

The suspect, Roland Peter,  according to the Police in River State ,  abducted his victim  from his house  and  was at the verge of eating pepper soup and yam porridge prepared with parts of the body of his victim’s  when the police swooped on him and some accomplices.

Ogun State

Ogun State seems to be taking the lead in the  report on killings for money rituals. Recently, three teenagers  were allegedly caught burning the head of a girl they killed for money ritual purposes  at the Oke Aregba area of Abeokuta in Ogun State.

The teenagers: Wariz Oladehinde, 17, and Abdul Gafar Lukman, 19, and the 20-year-old, Mustakeem Balogun,  confessed during interrogation that the victim identified simply as Rofiat,  was the girlfriend of one of them who was lured into their apartment, where they cut off their heads .

On why teenagers engage in money rituals remains a riddle to unravel.

Other arrests made by the Police in Ogun State involved Pastors  and  Islamic clerics allegedly involved in killings for money rituals.

There had been several other cases of killings for money rituals in the state .

Enugu

In   Enugu, the south-east region of Nigeria, the story is the same. A housewife, Mrs Ifebuchukwu Onyeishi narrated recently,  how her husband, Chidi Onyeishi, a tricycle operator , in connivance with a nonagenarian Pastor, allegedly killed their seven-year-old son for a money ritual.

The list is endless, with the introduction of different devices to achieving the devilish act.

Clergyman speaks

  Speaking with Saturday Vanguard,  the General Overseer, Apply Praise Ministry International and Chairman, Christian Association of Nigeria, Jakande /Bungalow district of Ejigbo, Pastor Segun Olatunde , said killings  for money ritual did not just begin today, adding that he met the ugly phenomenon while growing up as a child.

Asked if it worked , he replied affirmatively . According to him: “Yes, it works for them. Because if it isn’t, people will not be indulging it in the practice . It has been for a long time . I recall as a growing child , our parents warned us never to accept anything from strangers, especially when going to school.

Today, there are different versions of it. Some use human parts to prepare charms , while others use the parts to enhance their business. For some, it is to attract money and favour, to  them.  It is mysterious, just as money is mysterious and answers to blood.

“Recently some persons were arrested while they were burning some human parts to prepare charms for money rituals.  I don’t know how they do it but those arrested  said they were burning the human hand for money rituals. For some, the money must be spent in  a day, for new ones to come and failure to finish it that day attracts  dire consequences.

Killing humans does not guarantee being rich — Ifa Priest, Araba Ifayemi Elebuibon

By Shina Abubakar, Osogbo

A foremost traditionalist and Ifa priest, Araba Ifayemi Elebuibon has said that killing human does not guarantee being rich stressing that many spiritualists that embark on it are actually living a miserable life.

According to the renown Ifa Priest, “money ritual is in two ways, first, the popular gruesome killing of human with a view to using their body parts for money is more of magical than ritual. Over the years of my being a priest, I have never seen or heard any Ifa corpus about killing human for money rituals. It is not a certainty but magical. Many of the spiritualists involved in the illegality are themselves poor.

“If it is certain that once you kill someone and severe body part, mix it with certain things you start getting money, why are the herbalists still poor? Many of those caught after perpetrating the killings and used the body parts still complained that it didn’t work for them. So, it is not ritual but magic. Ritual is what you do regularly to sustain a level of flow of spirituality. In Yoruba tradition, the money ritual does not involve killing humans. It is called ‘Awure’, ‘Osole’. It involves mixing natural materials to enhance business and getting favours, it does not involve killing humans, it may involve using goats, pigeon etc. Those who are responsible for the act are mostly Muslim and Christian clerics. The records are always clear, most of those arrested by police and even paraded are either pastors of Church or Muslim clerics. “To stop the menace, parents must be responsible and train their children in the way of God. We must return to our values, placing integrity above materialism. Parents must be responsible for their children’s welfare and they should not be expecting their children to pay house rent and feed the family. Also, religious leaders must stop giving respect or title to those with questionable wealth. We must collectively eliminate the menace in our society. Killing humans does not guarantee being rich.

Source: What we know about ritual killings for money, Juju priests, Imams, Pastors, others speak

The prevalence of ritual killings amongst Nigerian youths

The cases of ritualistic activities, attacks and murders in Nigeria are too many to include here on a daily basis. I have stated this more than once. The article below not only confirms this. Some of the ritual murder cases referred to in the article have been previously reported on this site, some not. More importantly, the author of the article, Otuya Daniel, explains the reasons for this, seemingly, surge in what is popularly called ‘money rituals’. One of the contributing factors, he argues, is the example set by Nollywood movies idealizing the importance of a social status based on material wealth and the way one can ‘get rich quickly’: through a ‘money ritual’ which implies the use of someone’s organs and other body parts in a ‘juju’ ritual performed by local ‘herbalists’ who often are nothing else but criminals conniving in the act of murder.

For the interested readers: the article also explains the difference between Yahoo boys (internet fraudsters) and Yahoo Plus boys (ritual killers).

Warning: certain descriptions of ritual murders contain shocking, graphic details (FVDK).

The prevalence of ritual killings amongst Nigerian youths

Published: January 28, 2022
By: Otuya Daniel – The Street Journal, Nigeria

Never before have the quest to get riches by all means been so magnified among Nigerian youths than as it is now.

To satisfy the need for getting money, youths today have fully invested their time in learning and practising internet fraud popularly called Yahoo Yahoo.

They have created various ingenious ways to rip unsuspecting victims of hard-earned income.

As if that is not enough, the new wave amongst these fraudsters is to add killing of human beings for money rituals or as it is popularly called, Yahoo Plus.

While families and friends came together to celebrate this past Yuletide, it was not the case for two families who were thrown into grief as in two separate incidents, young girls were killed by their boyfriends in suspected cases of money rituals.

In one of the incidents, it was reported that a Yahoo boy simply identified as Osas who had recently returned to Nigeria from Ghana killed his girlfriend, Elohor Oniorosa for ritual purposes.

It was reported that the deceased and the suspect had gone out only for the young girl to be found dead with her throat slit and the fraudster went on the run.

A few days on, A 300-level student of the University of Jos (UNIJOS), identified as Jennifer Anthony, was found dead in a hotel room with her body mutilated and some body parts missing.

Jennifer was reportedly lured to the hotel by her 20-year-old boyfriend, Moses Okoh who drugged, killed her and proceeded to pluck off her eyes and other body organs before running off.

Such stories are not really new. In fact, in 2018, there was a public outcry in reaction to the gruesome way a student of Delta State University, Abraka, Elozino Ogege was murdered by some group of ritualists and internet fraudsters.

Not only was the poor girl killed, her organs were reportedly harvested while she was still alive.

The frequency of how these incidents has got many wondering, how did moral decadence in the Nigerian society get to the point where someone will unilaterally decide to kill, butcher and harvest another’s organs just for the sake of making quick riches.

Nigerian youths now consider the amount of money they have as the only accepted measure of success as such, they are ready to do any and all things possible to get it.

The ‘glorification’ of internet fraud in Nigeria is the root cause of this trend of ritual killings.

As a matter of fact, that it is called ‘Yahoo Plus’ depicts that many of these youths consider these killings as a necessity in the advancement of their ‘fraud business.’

Some days back, one of such fraudsters was arrested and his confession shocked many.

The 32-year-old, Afeez Olalere who was arrested by operatives of the Lagos State Police Command narrated how his mother encouraged him to kill his younger brother for money rituals.

His words, “My mother took me to a herbalist who told me if I want to be successful in the yahoo business, I will have to sacrifice one life and that person must be a sibling to me.”

Shockingly, the mother and son proceeded to kill a younger sibling for the stipulated rituals and were about to dump the body before they were apprehended.

It is not just parents of fraudsters who ‘support’ them, young girls are also now encouraged by their parents to date these Yahoo boys despite the attendant risks just for the financial ‘gains’.

A lady in Edo State recently said “In Benin city, at least 90% of parents are aware that their daughters are dating Yahoo/ G- boys and they are 100% in support of it.”

She also revealed that parents will gladly give out in marriage their daughters to such Yahoo boys and will even shout the catchphrase “them get money?” when these fraudsters shower them with money.

Worse still, social media has been vehemently used to convey the misleading message of ‘get rich or die trying’ to the youths.

Pictures and videos of flamboyant lifestyles displayed over Facebook, Instagram, TikTok etc deceive these youths and sometimes serve as motivation or the final push to some who were having doubts about going into such business.

Celebrities and/or social media personalities who should know better are not even helping matters. Sometimes even, they themselves display these luxuries lifestyles.

Nollywood actress, Tonto Dikeh recently revealed the extent some of these social media personalities go to display fake lifestyles when she said some people would rent money from bureau de change operators just to show off.

Although many of these displays are fake and only done for social media engagements, it does not register as such to the gullible youths.

Earlier in the month, two 15-year-old boys were caught in the act trying to use a 14-year-old for money rituals in Bayelsa.

According to reports, they lured the girl with charms, cut off her finger and had already begun the ritual process when a passerby saw them, raised alarm and the boys were arrested. It begs the question, where do these kids learn such?

Nigeria music producer, Samklef has said that Nollywood movies are a contributing factor to the rising cases of ritual killings among young people.

The musician argued that by constantly promoting fetish-themed content, Nollywood movies have influenced a lot of young Nigerians negatively.

His words, “Igbo Nollywood, English and Yoruba movie are the reason why a lot of young boys are doing rituals. They keep promoting fetish stuff in all their movies.”

Considered, there is some element of truism in the words of Samklef. For a long time, making money through rituals has been the predominant theme of Nigerian movies.

In fact, just by seeing the cast of a movie gives away the plot as some actors it may seem are only cast to play such ritual roles.

The plot of the movies have always revolved around a struggling young man, who meets a rich friend who introduces the poor man to a group of ritualists and after someone is sacrificed, the poor man instantly becomes extremely rich.

Having been fed with this content for a long time, it comes across to youths that a sure way out of poverty is money rituals and so, it is a route a desperate youth is willing to take.

Peer pressure and the company of friends a youth keep are also contributing factors.

As the saying goes, birds of a feather, flock together. Constant exposure and association with fraudsters will actually have a knock-off effect on many youths considering the fact that at this stage of their life, they make many outlandish decisions.

James McCue of Edith Cowan University, Australia advocates for parents  to help guild their teenagers as “A teen’s developing brain places them at greater risk of being reactive in their decision-making, and less able to consider the consequences of their choices.”

In the same vein, Nollywood actor, Ime Bishop Umoh, popularly known as Okon Lagos has said that boy child needs urgent attention to stem the tide of ritual killings.

His words, “Let’s fix the boy child and do it ASAP. It’s a shorter route to decriminalising and putting an end to most societal vices in our fast decaying society.

“Let’s put a central and foundational end to all these killings of young girls by these Benz driving wannabe boys.”

Generally, society has to step up and the paradigm should shift towards appreciating good and honest labour than just money or riches.

Just as a commentator said we need to digress and abandon the mindset that making money by any means establishes fulfilment in life and until we get this right, this generation of youths and the ones to come will continue to do things that are inhumane without any remorse.

Source: The prevalence of ritual killings amongst Nigerian youths

More (the following murder case has been referred to in the preceding article):

Police arrest suspected killer of 300L UNIJOS student

Published: January 12, 2022
By: Otuya Daniel – The street Journal, Nigeria

The Police in Plateau State have arrested and paraded Moses Oko, a 20-year-old suspected Yahoo boy who allegedly killed his girlfriend, Jennifer Anthony.

Jennifer, a 300L UNIJOS Student was found on January, 1st, 2022 with her eyes plucked out and other parts of her body mutilated.

According to Vanguard, the suspect was paraded alongside personal effects of the deceased and exhibits from the crime scene which included a blood-soaked bedsheet and a blood-stained fork allegedly used to pluck the deceased’s eyes

The State Commissioner of Police, CP Bartholomew Onyeka who paraded Moses Oko,  stated Oko was arrested on Tuesday, January 11 in Benue State.

The CP said, “The Command through my leadership has put together a lot of strategies to prevent crimes in Plateau State. But whenever crime occurs, we put in all efforts to arrest the perpetrators for them to face the consequences of their criminal actions.

“Sequel to the gruesome murder of Miss Jennifer Anthony, a 300 level student of the University of Jos whose lifeless body was found mutilated on 01/01/2022 at Domus Pacis Guest House, Jos by a man named Moses Oko ‘m’, aged 20 years, suspected to be her boyfriend who fled after committing the crime, the Command in a bid to arrest the perpetrator launched an aggressive manhunt on the suspect and tactically trailed him to Benue State where he was arrested by hawked-eye police operatives of the Command.

“The suspect will be arraigned in court as soon as investigation is completed.”

Source: Police arrest suspected killer of 300L UNIJOS student

And – referring to the same ritual murder case:

Suspected yahoo boy kills girlfriend for rituals in Edo

Published: December 27, 2021
By: Otyua Daniel – The Street Journal, Nigeria

A suspected internet fraudster popular called Yahoo boy who was simply identified as Osa has allegedly killed his girlfriend identified as Elohor Oniorosa, for ritual purposes.

It was reported that the incident happened in the Egor Local Government Area of Edo State near Benin on December 24, 2021.

It was gathered that the suspect, who recently returned to Nigeria from Ghana, allegedly killed the girl for ritual.

According to the report by Daily Trust, the deceased went out with the suspect but was found dead with her throat slit with a knife even as the suspect absconded.

The details of how it happened are however still sketchy at the moment.

Meanwhile, the Edo State Police Command’s Public Relations Officer, Kongtons Bello, who confirmed the incident, said the suspect is on the run.

He said that the father of the deceased, William Oniorosa, reported the case to the police and investigation is on to arrest the suspect.

The PPRO said, “The suspect’s name is Osas and his surname is unknown, who is a boyfriend of Elohor Oniorosa, daughter of one William Oniorosa, who also reported the incident to the police.

“Investigation is on while the suspect is on the run. The Incident happened on the 24th of December 2021,” the PPRO added.The Street Journal earlier reported how a sex worker developed a strange sickness and started vomiting blood after an encounter with clients suspected to be yahoo boys in Ondo.

Source: Suspected yahoo boy kills girlfriend for rituals in Edo

Liberia: Citizens protest against ritual murders – release on bail of arrested ANC supporter who posted Facebook message on ritual killings

The unrest in Liberia continues and even gets to a higher, organized, level. On Tuesday, October 5, a civil society organization, Citizens United Against Ritual Killing (CURK), staged a peaceful protest against the alleged wave of ritual murders across the country. The Liberian National Police continues to downplay the allegations though it admitted that at least one ritual murder had taken place.

A worrying trend is the arrest of a Facebook user, Jethro Harris, who was accused of ‘inciting disorder and chaos’ because of a post about an alleged ritual murder. Harris’ arrest comes in the aftermath of accusations by government officials that members of opposition parties are responsible for spreading ‘fake news’.

Ritual murders, which are a violation of the right to live and to live without fear, have thus become another threat: an attack on the freedom of speech, the freedom of expression. Hence the arrest of Jethro Harris, a supporter of the Alternative National Congress – one of a coalition of four political parties opposing the ruling CDC, Congress for Democratic Change – has added another dimension to the politicization of the phenomenon of ritual murders in Liberia:  a battlefield between ruling and opposition political parties (webmaster FVDK).

Citizens protest against mysterious death

Published: October 6, 2021
By: Lincoln G. Peters – The New Dawn, Liberia

Several residents of Monrovia under the banner Citizens United Against Ritualistic Killing (CURK) staged a peaceful protest Tuesday 5 October 2021 against the alarming wave of alleged ritualistic killings across the country.

According to the group, the current increase in the wave of ritualistic killings across the country is alarming, adding that there is no safety and protection for citizens in the country.

The Liberian National Police says reports of increase ritualistic killings here are fake news being propagated by the opposition.

But speaking in an interview with journalists at the protest scene in Bassa Community in Monrovia, the group’s spokesperson and chairman of the Collaborating Political Parties (CPP) Solidarity Brigade Byron Brown said their peaceful protest was meant to call the attention of the world to the alarming wave of alleged ritualistic killings across the country.

“The Government of President [George Manneh] Weah continues to show little or no interest in finding [a] solution to the problem and fear that is in citizens,” Byron Brown alleged.

Contrary to Brown’s allegation, the Liberian Government is blaming members of the opposition parties here for spreading fake news surrounding reports of ritualistic killings in the country.

Reports of killing for the past weeks have taken the country by storm, followed by social media posts that petrified the public with gruesome photos and testimonies of killings taking place in the country.

But in their reaction, the Liberian authorities say two ladies and a man launched podcasts on Facebook in which they explained they were seized from different locations, taken to woods, and escaped death at the hands of their captors.

But Byron insisted that since the ascendancy of the Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC) to the leadership of the country, there have been uncontrollable waves of alleged mysterious disappearances, kidnapping, and ritualistic deaths in the country.

“These things have [a] negative impact on the country and economy. This action today is void of politics and we are doing this to save our country and open it up to international investment and economic progress,” Brown claimed.

He denounced as disingenuous to the country and its people, Liberia National Police (LNP Inspector General Col. Patrick T. Suede’s claim that there is only one ritualistic death in the country, alleging instead that are ten reported ritualistic deaths across the country.

“We are going to our Legislature, the United States Embassy near Monrovia and we will petition them to call their attention to what is happening in the country that [the] government continues to give deaf ears to,” Brown continued.

“We are living in total fear in our country. Our peace and security are not sure. We are standing up for what we believe will liberate our country and secure international investors’ confidence to help our economy grow,” he added.

Byron noted that peaceful protest is expected to last for a week until the Government of Liberia can respond to their plight and assure their security and protection in the country.

Source: Citizens protest against mysterious death

And:

Hundreds of Liberians protest alleged ritual murders

Archive photo / [FILES] Liberian policemen .(Photo by Zoom DOSSO / AFP)

Published: October 5, 2021
By: AFP – The Guardian, Nigeria

Hundreds of women protested in Liberia’s capital Monrovia on Tuesday against a wave of alleged ritual killings in the country, an AFP journalist saw.

Rumours of ritual murders have been spreading on social media for weeks in the West African nation, with reports of corpses found with body parts removed — ostensibly for occult purposes.

Liberian police have denied the bulk of the reports, however, and arrested a member of the political opposition accused of fanning the rumours. (See below – the webmaster FVDK)

On Tuesday, hundreds of women gathered in front of Monrovia’s capitol building, which houses the country’s legislature, to protest the alleged slayings. 

The group also delivered a statement to legislators, seen by AFP, demanding that the government and police examine “the exponential rate of ritualistic killing”.

Ritual murders are not unheard of in Liberia and were common during the country’s back-to-back civil wars from 1989 to 2003. 

Body parts severed from the victim’s corpse are thought to be used in rituals designed to benefit the murderer. 

However late last month, Police Inspector General Patrick Sudue announced that most of the recent alleged incidents are baseless, according to local media.

“These are paid agents,” he was reported as saying, referring to the people circulating the rumours.

Sudue nonetheless clarified that one ritual murder did occur recently in southeastern Liberia.

Last week, Liberian police arrested a member of the opposition party Alternative National Congress for posting misinformation about ritual killings online.

Liberia is a poor country still recovering after its brutal civil wars and the West African 2014-16 Ebola pandemic, which killed 4,800 people in the country.

Source: Hundreds of Liberians protest alleged ritual murders

And:

ANC Partisan jailed for ‘False Alarm’ — but the party says police tramples on his right to speech

“This is a misdemeanor and the police sent a whole container of people to Nimba County to arrest this young Defendant Jethro S. K. Harris for exercising his right to free speech,” Mr. Cummings said.  

Published: October 5, 2021
By:  Tina S. Mehnpaine – Daily Observer, Liberia

The Monrovia City Court on Monday, October 4,2021 jailed Jethro S. K. Harris, a stalwart of the Alternative Nation Congress (ANC) for allegedly spreading ‘False Public Alarm’ through his Facebook post.

On Monday, September 27, 2021, Defendant Jethro Harris posted a photo of the late Ms. Rolisa N. Gbeintor, a Liberian and alumnae of the Lenn Miller High School in Sinkor, Monrovia along with a graphic, claiming that it was the body of the late Gbeintor with parts extracted from her body.  

Harris was arrested last week in Nimba County while on a tour with fellow partisans and political leader, Alexander B. Cummings. According to the police charge sheet, defendant Harris was invited for questioning but did not show up. 

“Investigation established that Ms. Gbeintor got sick for a protracted period and subsequently died, that defendant Harris willingly, purposely and intentionally did the post so as to buttress falsehood already being circulated by some persons to be identified that the country is unsafe,” the LNP said. 

“In view of the foregoing, the investigation herewith charges Harris with the commission of the crime ‘False Public Alarms in Violation of chapter 17, section 17.4 of the revised penal law pending trial by the court of competent jurisdiction,” the police said. “In cognizance of article 12 (b) of the 1986 Constitution of Liberia, defendant Jethro was arrested and subsequently informed of his Miranda rights.”

The police added that the post by defendant Harris does not have any Iota of truth and was intended to instigate citizens and persons residing in the country against the National Security apparatus, create economic hardships, and stall the movement of peaceful people. The police also said Harris’s post creates the impression that “investors closing down their business and leaving the country.”

The police believe that Article 15 (a) of the 1986 Constitution provides that every person shall have the right to freedom of expression but also reminds citizens they are fully responsible for abuse thereof. 

Of late, reported cases of ritual killings and survivors’ stories have been on the rise. In Caldwell, for instance, a lifeless body of a lady was discovered with body parts extracted, same as with, to create, the Soul Clinic community.  The victim this time around was a male. 

But for police authorities, pictures and videos about ritualistic incidents are not a representation of what is unfolding in the country. The police added that they were posted to instill fear in the citizens and to tarnish the image of the country and raise false national security alerts. Police then warned those involved in orchestrating a negative image about the country to desist or face the full weight of the law. The arrest of Jethro is reportedly the first by the police days after warning against the spread of fake news about an issue that has to do with a mysterious death.

For the ANC, Harris committed no crime and broke no law or violates the Penal code of Liberia. Rather, his Facebook post is a protected speech under the Liberian Constitution (Article 15) and under Constitutional Law. 

“Sections 12.33 and 17.4 of the Penal Code do not fit into Jethro’s post. He did not falsely post about an IMPENDING bombing or other crime as required by 17.4; neither did he report to any law enforcement official as required by 12.33.  He simply posted on his Facebook page,” argued ANC Secretary General Aloysius Toe.

Toe added Jethro’s post was a recreation of an alleged gruesome act of ritualistic killing, even if false and untrue, that has been making rounds on social media; and may have reasonably believed that what he came across on social media, coupled with massive public outcry about ritualistic killings, and thus recreated on his Facebook page, was intended only to draw public attention.

“He alleged that an act had already been committed, he didn’t say the act was impending (about to happen) as required by Section 17.4 of the Penal Code. The charges against him are   bogus and politically motivated,” the ANC said. “This is a CDC government clamp down on the opposition, using a rather professional police force to carry on partisan policing.”

The ANC Secretary General added Jethro was only targeted and falsely arrested and falsely imprisoned because of his association with the opposition community, and in particular, Alexander B. Cummings. 

“Police IG Patrick Sudue knows and should have reason to know that he’s proceeding wrongly and illegally by ordering the false arrest, and false imprisonment of Harris. There will be legal consequences. But Jethro Harris is spending 3 nights in a filthy police cell on bogus charges without investigation simply because of his root with an opposition political party. “

The ANC’s standard-bearer, Alexander B. Cummings, who has been making efforts to get Harris released, alleged that the entire case has been politicized.  “This is a misdemeanor and the police sent a whole container of people to Nimba County to arrest this young man for exercising his right to free speech,” Mr. Cummings said.

Cummings, accompanied by his lawyer, had gone to the Monrovia City Court to bail out defendant Harris, only to be informed that Harris had been taken to the Monrovia Central Prison at South Beach.

“Today we showed up with his bond to have him bailed. He was taken to South Beach prison.” ANC political leader said. “This is a minor misdemeanor. It’s a bailable offense, but it has been politicized. We politicize the rule of law and we wonder why we are not getting investors.” 

Mr. Cummings vowed to follow the court procedures. “We are a party of rule of law and we will follow the rules. If the judge doesn’t do the right thing, we will go to the Supreme court,” he said.

Recently there have been several mysterious killings in and around Monrovia, including two women and an elderly man. Police Inspector General, Patrick Sudue, said people were posting these pictures to instill fear among citizens and present the country as though it is unsafe. 

“People are portraying the gloomy image of the country as though it is not safe,” he said.  LNP have earlier warned that people caught posting dead pictures on social media to cause fear among the citizenry without investigating will be arrested.

Source: ANC Partisan Jailed for ‘False Alarm’ — but the party says police tramples on his right to speech

and:

Opposition Alternative National Congress’ Youth Official lands in jail for ‘Inciting’ Facebook post

Published: October 6, 2021
By: Joyclyn Weah – Front Page Africa, Liberia

MONROVIA – A stalwart of the Youth League of the opposition Alternative National Congress (ANC), Jethro Saylah Kangar Harris, has been jailed for allegedly circulating false content on social media.

Suspect Jethro Harris was forwarded to the Monrovia City Court on Monday for onward prosecution after being charged by the Liberia National Police (LNP) with the commission of the crime of false public alarms in violation of chapter 17, section 17.4 of the revised Penal Law of Liberia.

On Saturday, the police claimed that suspect Harris posted on his Facebook page, a picture of a young lady he identified as Rolisa N. Gbeintor, a Liberian and alumnae of the Len Miller High School in Sinkor, Monrovia. He placed a corpse that appeared to have gone under post mortem examinations alongside the picture, claiming it was Rolisa’s body and that she has been killed and body parts extracted for ritualistic purposes.

On his Facebook page, he reportedly wrote:

I’m in tears tonight.

It’s so painful how the young people of Liberia are dying mysteriously…

This is the late Rolisa N. Gbeintor, an alumnae of the Len Millar High School…

She was murdered and parts of her body were extracted.

His post immediately caught the attention of the LNP and they launched an investigation to establish its veracity.

Harris was on invited by the LNP for questioning but did not turn out; stating that he was in Ganta, Nimba County. A team of LNP officers headed by assistant commissioner Alphonso A. Paypay, headed to Nimba County on Friday, October 1, and arrested Suspect Harris for “spreading false information to the Liberian public and the world at-large; thus committing the crime false public alarm.”

The police charge sheet claimed that Harris’ post which is established to be unfounded, is also intended to create economic hardship and the likelihood of investors closing down their businesses and leaving the country.

The post, the police maintained, is intended to stall movement of peaceful residents. The document noted that the suspect ‘willingly, purposely and intentionally’ did the Facebook post so as to buttress falsehood already being circulated by some unidentified people that the country is unsafe.

The Police wrote in their charge sheet that the post, which do not have any iota of truth is also intended to put some of citizens and persons residing within Liberia’s borders against the national security apparatus, scare away investors and some people intended to travel to Liberia.

The ANC has condemned the Police action against its partisan, and said it is in gross violation of his constitutional rights.

Article 15 (A) of the Constitution of Liberia provides that every person shall have the right to freedom of expression. However, it adds that they should be held responsible for the abuse of such freedom.

The ANC political leader, Mr. Alexandra Cummings, swam by party executives and supporters, stormed the courtyard but were prevented from securing the release of the suspect, even though the crime he is charged with, is a billable offense.

Speaking to reporters minutes after suspect Harris was taken to the South Beach by heavily guarded armed police officers, Mr. Cummings said that a bond to have their partisan release was made available, but the judge insisted on taking the defendant to jailed.

Cummings termed as unfortunate and unfair, the government’s action against his partisan, noting that government is not being helpful and cooperative by punishing suspect Harris for a social media post.

He further indicated that the judiciary should not be politicized.

“We got to give the judges the freedom to interpret the laws. This is not how we want to run our Judiciary and not how we want to run the country and for the manner of misdemeanor this whole thing is being politicized.” According to him, ANC is an opposition party of law, and as such they will follow the law and ensure that Harris is released.

Source: Opposition Alternative National Congress’ Youth Official Lands in Jail for ‘Inciting’ Facebook Post

And:

Liberia: Alternative National Congress’ Youth released on bail

Published: October 7, 2021
By: Willie N. Tokpah – Front Page Africa, Liberia

Monrovia – The Assistant Secretary General of the opposition Alternative National Congress (ANC), jailed at the Monrovia Central Prison over alleged false public alarm and false statement, was freed on bail on Wednesday amid intense pressure from his party and the campus-based Vanguard Students Unification Party.

Jethro Harris, who had spent four days in prison over a Facebook post in which he alarmed about the ritualistic killing of his ‘friend’, was charged in violation of section 17.4 of the revised Panel Code of Liberia.

His lawyers Atty. Lafayette Gould, Atty. Aloysius Toe and Cllr. Findley Karngar call the charges frivolous. The three lawyers had filed Summary Proceedings against Magistrate Joma Jallah for reportedly refusing to approve their client’s appearance bond after Circuit Judge Roosevelt Willie had heard the petition and ordered Magistrate Jallah to approve the bond in keeping with law. 

However,  more than 24 hours after said mandate, the magistrate later released the defendant to his lawyers Wednesday on bail.

Following his release, Cllr. Toe told journalists that Harris was imprisoned for standing against injustice, adding that said his client is now a free man and will remain free.

However, he noted that the legal battle surrounding Harris’s allegation is expected to take place Friday, noting that no amount it intimidation will make those who are speaking against ills in the country keep silent.

“No no amount of witch-hunt, attempt and decision and no amount of scare tactic will make us to keep silent, neither will the ANC be scare to stand up for a cause,” Cllr. Toe says.

He described the action of Defendant Harris as a “passive resistance”, which he believes is in the right direction.“If any of you will have a sad experience of going to jail because you believe in what is right, and on the account you are arrested, tell other people to stand up for the same thing and let them be arrested, Cllr. Toe says.

Source: Liberia: Alternative National Congress’ Youth Released on Bail

Nigeria: ritual killers disguised as lovers

One of the craziest stories I read yesterday (see yesterday’s posting) follows below. It contains a wise lesson but also a chilling story. Whereas at fist sight it reports on ‘ordinary’ criminal activities, the reader soon discovers that more is going on: ritualistic activities, ‘money business’, ‘money rituals’ – and that’s the reason why the article has been included here.

The incidents took place in various parts of the country, not related to a particular region, social class, or ethnic group. The first mentioned murder occurred recently in Lagos (June 2021), but other reported ‘money rituals’ happened in Benue State, Ogun State, Ondo State, Osun State, and – again – Lagos State (2012, 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021). Some of these murder cases have been reported on extensively earlier on this site.

Warning: Some readers may find the following story disturbing (FVDK).

MORE AND MORE NIGERIANS ARE FALLING VICTIM TO HARBINGERS OF DEATH DISGUISING AS LOVERS, KUNLE AKINRINADE REPORTS FOLLOWING THE CASE OF A COMPANY’S CHIEF EXECUTIVE FOUND DEAD LAST SUNDAY IN A LAGOS SERVICE APARTMENT HE ALLEGEDLY LODGED IN WITH A SIDE CHIC.

Published: June 26, 2021
By: The Nation, Nigeria- Kunle Akinrinade

Incidents of individuals’ death in the process of romance with the opposite sex increased by one early in the week with the demise of billionaire businessman and chief executive officer of Super TV, Michael Usifo Ataga, allegedly after an outing with a side chic.

Ataga, a resident of highbrow Banana Island in Lagos, was said to have been reported missing on Sunday by concerned friends and family members as his whereabouts became unknown.

Everyone, including his wife and children who were resident in Abuja, was said to have become worried when the checks made at Ataga’s office in Victoria Island, Lagos showed that he was nowhere in sight while he could also not be found at his Banana Island residence.

It turned out later that his lifeless body was found in a three-bedroom service apartment in Lekki Phase 1, Lagos with multiple wounds inflicted on his body and several withdrawals made from his bank account supposedly by a mystery woman he had checked into the apartment with.

Investigation conducted by security agents would later reveal that Ataga’s death occurred about two weeks after he met the woman in question and they checked into the said apartment at Lekki Phase 1.

A combined team of the police and DSS operatives from Abuja were said to have unveiled the identity of the owner of the apartment in which Ataga was found dead and it was discovered that she had received payments from the side chic’s bank account into which Ataga himself had previously made a transfer.

Happily, the side chic in question has since been tracked down by security operatives and arrested alongside the owner of the Lekki Phase 1 apartment.

One death too many

Ataga’s case is one in the long list of Nigerians who in recent times have fallen victim to murderous fraudsters disguising as lovers. For instance, when Akin Alupaida invited his girlfriend from her base in Ibadan, Oyo State to his base in Apomu, Isokan Local Government Area, Osun State on June 8, the unnamed lady had no reason to suspect that she was about to be murdered by the man that had professed love to her.

However, the said lady was butchered into pieces by her supposed lover after a romp at an apartment belonging to the latter’s friend. The police said that Akin’s accomplice and owner of the apartment, Kabiru Oyeduntan, barged into the room and assisted his friend in strangling the 20-year-old lady to death and dismembering her for ritual purposes.

Parading Oyeduntan at the Osun Police Command headquarters on June 11, the Commissioner of Police, Wale Olokode, explained that the suspect was arrested based on a tip-off from members of the public. Olokode said the head, wrist, and other parts of the lady’s body were found by detectives inside a box in one of the suspect’s rooms.

In his confession, Oyeduntan said the lady in question was killed for the purpose of using her for money rituals by his identified as Akin (O’clumsy) Alupaida.

He said: “It was my friend that brought the lady to my place from Ibadan. But he already told me that he wanted to do a money ritual. He sought my assistance and promised to give me N50,000. I agreed.”

“While he was having sex with her, I came in and assisted him to hold her two legs, and he strangled her to death.

“Akin was the one who dismembered the lady’s body. He removed the heart, private parts and took them away.”

Eighteen months after she mysteriously disappeared amid preparations for her wedding in December 2019, the remains of Josephine Cynthia Onche, an operative of the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), were found in a shallow grave in the Obi Local Government Area, Benue State, where her body was dumped after she was killed for rituals by the same man she had announced in a wedding invite as her husband to-be.

The arrest of Josephine’s would-be husband, Christopher, led to the exhumation of her body from a shallow grave in a local government close to Otukpo.

It was said that a commercial motorcyclist who knew about the incident reported to Josephine’s family.

Christopher had allegedly brought in a native doctor from Ogun State to carry out money rituals with Josephine’s body parts.

“The commercial motorcycle rider led security operatives to arrest Christopher, an Igbo man, and he led the police to Ogun State where they arrested a native doctor who allegedly performed a ritual with the woman’s body in Obi Local Government Area of Benue State before returning to Ogun State,” a source reportedly said.

Like Osun and Benue incidents, the murder of the first daughter of former Deputy Governor of Ondo State, Khadijat Olubiyo, made headlines in 2018.

Khadijat, a final year student of Adekunle Ajasin University in Akungba Akoko (AAUA) was allegedly strangled to death by her boyfriend, Seidu Adeyemi, who was said to have buried her remains in a shallow grave in his room in Okearo area of Akure, the state capital, covered it with the rug and slept on the grave for five days.

In 2019, one Abosede Adeyemi Iyanda was gruesomely murdered by her former boyfriend, Segun Olaniyi, who dismembered her and used her body parts for money-making rituals.

As the story goes, Olaniyi, 42, was Abosede’s ex-lover, who promised to help her with some money but instead hatched a plan to use her for money rituals.

Olaniyi called one Akanbi Babalola and Ayo Adeleye on the phone to come and do the slaughtering of the woman who was formerly his girlfriend but now married to another man when she visited him in his offshore office.

While in his office, Olaniyi told Adeleye to go and buy food for the woman, who they said felt very tired after walking a long distance to get there. Segun then put in the food a drug that would make her feel weak and sleepy.

Olaniyi later told her to go to the stream beside his office and wash her hair while she was completely naked. He asked Adeleye and Akanbi to lead her there.

But while Abosede was washing her hair, Adeleye pushed her head into the river, brought out a pocket knife and killed her. Both of them then pulled her body out from the river and dismembered it, separating the flesh from the bones as instructed by Olaniyi.

They later cut the flesh into pieces and sold them to some herbalists, alfas and a pastor who needed them for money rituals. Some of them also allegedly roasted the meat and ate it, washing it down with hot drinks.

Police said that Olaniyi was tracked and arrested, and his arrest led to the recovery of Abosede’s body parts from different Ogun villages where he buried or sold her mutilated remains.

Other suspects arrested in connection with Abosede’s murder include Adeifa Sogbeyinde (37), Rasaq Rasaq Arabs (27), Sunday Akinyemi (41), Adewole Olwafemi aka Pastor (38), Mustapha Ajibola aka Alfa (31), Mustapha Iliya (30), Shilola Amodu aka Alfa (38), Jamiu Abass (25), Smooth  Kazeem aka Alfa (37) and Adesola  Oduyemi (56).

Confessing, Olaniyi said: “She called me on the phone saying that she was coming to see me. I asked her the reason for her visit and she said she wanted financial assistance to boost her business.

“I called Akanbi, who is my helping hand, and told him to come around because someone would be visiting us. Already, we had work at hand, so Akanbi suggested that we use her for the work.

“We killed her beside my house. I took the head, two hands and part of the meat. I sold the head to Africa for N40,000. I sold one of the hands to an orthodox doctor named Murideen for N15,000 and the other hand to Tonight for N15,000. I sold the flesh to one Alfa named Sunday Akinyemi (N10,000), Rasaq (N5,000) and Mustafa (N5,000).

“It was Ajibola that introduced Mustapha Iliya to me. I used part of the flesh to do powdered medicine which if taken with a hot drink would draw customers.

“At times, we kill the husbands of some of our customers to turn them into widows so that they would join us in bringing victims to be slaughtered.”

His confession led the IRT detectives to Abeokuta and different Ogun villages like Ifo, Itori, Papalanto and Adigbe, where eleven suspects were arrested and eight of them confessed to the kidnapping, killing and selling of the body parts of the victim.

Among the items recovered by IRT operatives were decomposed human breasts, burnt human flesh mixed with  liquid substance in a bottle and calabash, one complete human foot, pieces of dry human skull, a Laura SUV with registration number KTU801FP, one Bajaj Boxer motorcycle with Registration number JGB019VC, one unregistered Toyota Corolla and one Toyota Matrix with Registration number AKD703FU.

Other recent cases

It will be recalled that in June 2020, a 39-year-old man, Chris Ndukwe, committed suicide in Lagos after killing his 25-year-old girlfriend, Olamide Alli.

Police said that Ndukwe and Alli were found dead at the former’s residence at Road 5, House 16A, Victory Point Estate, Ilasan, Lagos, after a tip-off to officers of Ilasan Police Station.

A statement issued by the then police spokesman, Bala Elkana, said: “The woman was found lying in a pool of blood, with deep cuts on her head, while the man’s mouth was foaming with whitish substance.

“It was alleged that the man stabbed the woman to death with a kitchen knife and thereafter drank some poisonous substances suspected to be insecticides.

“Two blood-stained kitchen knives, two empty bottles of the poisonous substances, three empty cans of Red Bull energy drink and a plier were recovered from the scene.”

Elkana added that family members of the deceased lovers revealed that they were not married but had a relationship for over seven years, adding that they had two boys, aged seven and three.

He said: “Their relationship is described as complicated, as the couples were on and off over the years. While the man lives at Victory Point Estate Ibadan, the woman lives at Ogba (Lagos).

“The woman was said to have visited the man alongside her 22-year-old sister a night before the incident, on his invitation.

He said that Alli’s sister was the first to have noticed that they were both dead and raised the alarm.

Elkana added: “In her (Alli’s sister) statement, she was woken up by a loud music from the room where the corpses were found, as herself and the kids slept in a different room.”

On July 21, 2012, a postgraduate student of Nasarawa State University, Cynthia Osokogu, then 25 years old, was lured from Abuja to Lagos by Okwumo Nwabufo, who she had met and befriended on Facebook.

Nwabufo had paid for the deceased’s flight ticket from Abuja and lodged her in Room C1 at Cosmilla Hotel, Lake View Estate, Festac Town, Lagos, where he later connived with one Olisaeloka Ezike, and murdered the young lady.

The duo drugged Cynthia by putting Rohypnol in her drink after which they tied her hands and legs and also gagged her mouth with a handkerchief and part of her hair weave on.

Cynthia’s killers thereafter stole her two Blackberry mobile phones, jewellery, sex toy vibrator, passport and a pair of shoes.

In December 2019, a 23-year old man, Adeeko Owolabi, reportedly connived with a 42-year-old self-acclaimed pastor of a white garment church, Segun Philip, to murder his girlfriend and final year Sociology student at the Lagos State University, Favour Daley-Oladele.

According to the spokesman of Ogun State Police Command, Owolabi, who was arrested in Ikoyi-Ile area of Osun State, confessed that he used his girlfriend to prepare a ritual meal for himself and his own mother who he claimed had been broke.

According to Oyeyemi, “the deceased was reported to have left home to an unknown destination since the 8th of December, 2019 and had not been seen since then; hence, she was reported missing by her parents at Mowe Police Station.

“Upon the report, the DPO Mowe Division, SP Marvis Jayeola, detailed his crack detectives to unravel the mystery behind the sudden disappearance of the 22-year-old woman.

Source: Killer lovers on the prowl – Concerns over activities of crime merchants disguising as lovers

Nigeria – confession of Yahoo Plus Boys: “Ritual does not give us money”

Screenshot from ICIR Nigeria website showing suspects Uche, Onoriode, Desmond and Obajero. 

The International Center for Investigative Reporting, ICIR, is an independent, nonprofit news agency that seeks to promote transparency and accountability through robust and objective investigative reporting. The ICIR’s mission is to promote good governance and entrench democratic values by reporting, exposing, and combating corruption. 

Comment webmaster FVDK under construction.
Check Elozino Delta State University in earlier posts
(webmaster FVDK)

Confession of Yahoo Plus Boys:
“Ritual does not give us money”

Published: November 8, 2019
By:  Ejiro Umukoro

IN their desperation to join the ranks of their compatriots who have been making millions of dollars out of online-scams, young Nigeria- based wannabe scammers known as ‘yahoo boys’ are resorting to the use of traditional charms and mystical powers to charm potential victims.

Yahoo Boys are young men —usually aged between 22-29 years—who specialize in various types of cybercrime. Many of them may be undergraduates or college dropouts whose distinct lifestyles of fast cars, wealth and ostentation is the envy of many of their age-mates. The Yahoo Boys are not limited by geography— the internet is their home— and their victims are as diverse as there are naive and people ready to fall for get-rich-quick scams.

There are numerous websites dedicated to providing tips for those interested in joining the growing ranks of Yahoo Boys. According to a research report, Understanding Cybercrime Perpetrators and the Strategies They Employ in Nigeria, the use of voodoo and charms for spiritual protection and to charm potential victims is very common among Yahoo Boys in Nigeria. The practice is referred to as “Yahoo Plus. According to the report, another level in the use of charms is known as Yahoo Plus Plus, which “involves the use of human parts and may need kidnapping other human beings for rituals, which is not necessary in ‘‘Yahoo Plus.’’ In Yahoo Plus Plus, the use of things such as victims finger nails, rings, carrying of corpses, making incision on their body, sleeping in the cemetery, citing of incantation, using of their fingers for rituals, and having sex with ghosts are common.”

Two suspects: Emudiaga and Desmond 

Getting a Victim – The Kidnapping

The car drives by in a lazy fashion. Its three passengers, all male: Macaulay Desmond Oghenemaro, Emese Emudiaga Kelvin and Onoriode Enaike are good spotters. They know a victim when they see one. The signs are usually obvious: a response to a cat-call, eye contact, a smile, a wave of the hand, a thumbs up or just the mere sight of their expensive car is enough to pull a vulnerable, or even, willing participant. This is their fourth recon for their next task. The last three girls they got had been easy catch, their names unremembered, their bodies long decomposed; each one, a girl on the lookout for quick money, free food, or free drinks in return for a one night, short term, or simply a girl keen on dating only men who drive cars.

The three of them sight a potential victim. She flags them down and gets in. She looks about twenty-years-old. She’s not a student; a fashion designer she tells them. They drive to the hottest spot in town for drinks, skewered meat and food. They continue to pour alcohol into her glass, ordering more bottles of beer. She guzzles down the beer as she feasts on the meat and other goodies that they push before her.

The night was about to be ushered in. Their day job as ‘Yahoo boys’(online fraudsters) has taken a new twist. They are now Yahoo Plus Plus, a code name for ‘ritualists’ – or those who are in the business of getting human body parts for use in rituals and occult practices which are supposed to guarantee success of their internet scams. They signaled each other: it was time to take her out. They get her into the car in a drunken stupor then drive several kilometres to the outskirts of Oghara into a bush where they first plucked out one of her eyes while she was still alive. The young lady was crying, begging them to forgive her and let her go, but they went ahead and pluck the other eye, remove her breasts and heart before she died.

Three hours later they are done with her. They abandon her body out in the open, her hands and feet bound with marine ropes. Within three hours they cut off her organs: breasts, heart and eyes. Once they were done, they head for their next stop at the ‘Jazz Man’s’ shrine in Alegbo, Warri.

His name is Ojokojo Robinson Obajero, a 63-years-old man, who though an expert in herbal medicines, mixes his craft with occult practices. They call him the ‘Jazz Man’ in pidgin patois. When the three men meet him and presented the human organs, Obajero tells them when to return. They leave. Four days later, Obajero summons the three men and hands over the burnt ashes of the deceased’s body parts he claims he used in preparing a “money ritual concoction”, which he tells them will guarantee that their online victims fall prey for their tricks to obtain money through fraud.

Several weeks later they returned to Obajero, disappointed and angry. Their business of internet fraud has not been booming as they expected. Instead, it seems that the online victims they have been targeting have become smarter and are no longer falling for their scams. It’s also been several months since they made any money from female victims looking for love on the internet.

They demand to know from Obajero why his ritual did not work. He tells them that he has been testing them – the first three victims whose body parts they brought to him for conjuring was a test to confirm they would not divulge his identity as the person making the charms. He tells them he is confident they will keep their mouths shut and demands that they must get a fifth victim whose body parts he will use to make a new charm.

The three scammers are not happy with this new request. Desmond tells Obajero that they had put in a lot of effort to get the body parts from their four previous victims, and yet they had not got any results. Desmond is angry that even though they had invoked the occult, they were not as successful in luring victims as they had been before they started engaging with Obajero. But this time, Obajero makes a firm promise: “This time you will make money through the death of the girl and the ritual I will do for you.”

The three men left wondering where to get their next victim. Less than 24 hours later, Onoriode calls Desmond and Emese. He tells them there is a possible victim — a student in Abraka University where he works as a security guard. The girl, Elozino Ogege is a 300 level Mass Communication student of the Delta State University who had a few days earlier, asked him if he could help her with information regarding available rooms for rent within the school’s staff quarters, and he had now has asked the girl to return the next day. He told his two accomplices this would be an opportunity for them to kidnap her and take her out of the school premises with the help of the head of security, Nwosisi Benedict Uche, who will be paid N30,000 for allowing them to pass through the gate without the boot of the car being subjected to a search.

One of the victims: Elozino

Inside the Lecturers Staff Quarters, the three of them waylay Elozino, incapacitate her with a toxic fume, and dump her in the boot of the jeep they brought. While Onoriode waited behind at his guard post, the other two drove to Emese’s house in Umeghe and waited for Onoriode to join them after work hours. Once Onoriode arrived, they drive towards Abraka just before Obiaruku by the right when coming from Warri axis into a large expansive land thick with vegetation. They drive through the bush track of lined palm trees. The bush track leads to Ugunu Community but they do not drive inwards, parking the Corolla car a few metres from the expressway. It was already dark. They get their tools and torchlight.

Desmond had drank half a bottle of strong expensive alcohol but his two friends had no need to dull their senses before they mutilated the girl they had successfully kidnapped. Elozino was crying, begging them to let her go but they ignored her pleas while they plucked her eyes out, removed her heart and cut off her nipples. Two and a half hours later, they are done with the deed. They drive off and deliver the dismembered parts to the occultist who once again instructs them to return after two days when he would have completed preparing the charms.

This was their 5thvictim. In their desperation to make money through ritual killings and sacrifices, they covered an estimated distance of at least 78KM, a journey of about 1hour 27mins between Abraka to Otefe, Oghara in at least 10 instances (780KM) (870 minutes); including traveling back and forth from Abraka to Warri on at least 10 occasions to meet with the occultist who prepared charms, estimated distance of 490KM both ways, a total of 660 minutes; in addition to navigating their way from their home base in Abraka to Delta State University, DELSU, towards the expressway some distance from Obiaruka where they committed their last crime, a journey of at least 41KMboth ways and roughly 50mins at the least. On average, it took them about 3 hours on each victim to extract the organs, an average total of 15 hours spent.

While they were at home awaiting the call from the jazz man, in less than 48 hours later, in the early hours of Saturday 10thNovember 2018, all three men including the occultist were rounded up by the police. A tipoff from the victim’s family led to an investigation that helped the police trace the girl’s cell phone, a Tecno K7 Mobile, to the murderers. Elozino Ogege was their fifth victim.

Four suspects: Uche, Onoriode, Desmond and Obajero

ON MISSING GIRLS

A follow-up investigation into the other 4 missing girls was made. Reports from Police Missing Person data does not have any record of reported missing girls during this period when the acts were carried out. According to the Police IPO in charge of Elozino’s case, who followed up on the perpetrators confession, no bodies of the missing girls were found when they went to inspect the areas where their bodies were dumped in the bushes in Oghara.

The late Elozino-Ogege 

When the police was asked why there was no missing persons’ report, one theory postulated was that since the bodies of the girls according the yahoo boys were left abandoned in the open, decomposition was fast and the decayed bodies and bones likely eaten up by animals.

The other reason he explained was that, as a rule, because police don’t trust anyone, many people prefer not to report such cases of dead or mutilated bodies found so they are not mistaken or held for being responsible for such deaths or incidences. To remedy this, he suggests that citizens in general can report such cases to NGOs whose focus covers such issues who will then bring the case to the police. That way, the person who made the report is at first protected until investigations into the matter are completed.

But most importantly, citizens should begin to take it upon themselves to report suspicious activities and suspicious persons to the police early on as a preemptive call-to-action. Neighbourhood Watch is a must in combating crimes, illicit and illegal activities in all communities, especially more so in the ‘ember’ months ahead, where end of year activities are highest.

Efforts were also made to reach the EFCC (Economic and Financial Crimes Commission) to give us data on activities surrounding violent killings of females within the context of Yahoo Plus Plus using the FOI Request but no response, over two months before this report was filed, was gotten from EFCC regarding this. Violence of any kind against women: yahoo plus plus, other occult related killings, rape, assault, etc., are human rights abuses that must not be condoned by society. Cases must be reported and speedy justice administered to stop the scourge and prevent future incidents.

More needs to be done to collect data on missing women in Nigeria, to better understand the scope of the problem and work towards making university campuses a safe space for female students.

THE SCAM

As foreign law enforcement crackdown on online scams in a bid to protect their citizens from online fraud, it will become harder and harder for the Yahoo Boys to keep operating as they have in the past. Ritual killings and the belief that their victims’ body parts will create charms that will enable them to earn a living from scams are just one of the results from a population of young people who are turning to crime to make a living.

Nigeria’s youth unemployment rate averaged 36.5% iin the third quarter of 2018, while the national average rose to 23.1%. With graduates entering the workplace in greater numbers, there needs to be a concerted effort by national and state governments to provide an environment that will enable job creation to give young people better choices.

Yahoo Boys as also adept at cyber-enabled financial fraud. A six month operation wire wire conducted by the U.S. Department of Justice, U.S. Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Department of the Treasury and the U.S. Postal Inspection Service resulted in 74 arrests in the United States and overseas, including 29 in Nigeria, and three in Canada, Mauritius and Poland.  The operation also resulted in the seizure of nearly $2.4 million, and the disruption and recovery of approximately $14 million in fraudulent wire transfers. Many of these scammers who were in Nigeria have since fled to other countries eg Ghana, Dubai ,South Africa, Gambia as the Nigerian Economic and Financial Crimes commission closed in on them.

I set out to interview Desmond and Onoriode who admitted to practicing Yahoo Plus Plus rituals. Together as a gang they spent an estimated 1,311KM, equaling a total of 1,580 minutes on the prowl looking for vulnerable women they can lure. Their lead-man, Emese, was alleged to have slumped and died when the police were close to catching him. Desmond and Onoriode were both in police custody while awaiting trial when this interview was conducted. During the interview, they were unemotional as they narrated how they kidnapped their victims and mutilated their bodies.

Sitting down on a short bench close to a hedge of plants, the sun shining overhead with a white plastic table separating us, this is an excerpt from the interview I conducted in the presence of the police:

Yahoo Plus Boys Onoriode and Desmond     

Q: What’s your name and how old are you?

Macaulay Desmond. I’m 32 years. I Finished secondary school in 2008 (Urhuoka Secondary School, Abraka) but I was born in Lagos. I did my primary school in Benin and secondary school in Abraka.

Q: Were you in business before?

Desmond: I was into photography work and sand dredging from high sea. My job was to pile it up. I dredged in Bayelsa and with Delta Glass for two years and six months. Photography was from 2006 to 2013. I was learning photography as an apprentice at the same time I was schooling in secondary school. After school I go to do my apprenticeship. I was good with snapping photos, creating handbills, all types of photo enlargements, making complimentary cards, CD plate transfers and so on. But after I finished secondary school I stop my apprenticeship and left the job. Because I didn’t have the money to open my own shop I decided to work for my boss. After a while I left the job because it wasn’t paying that well. So I went to Lagos to work for another construction company. But that too wasn’t paying me well.

So I approach my Uncle to help me with money to further my studies. So my Uncle put me in the line of dredging sand from 2013 up till 2016 when I now leave for Ghana. I left because the dredging contractors who supplied the sands to Beta Glass was not paying, they owed us for long periods. Life was difficult. When I complain to my uncle he no show concern; im own be say e don put you for line. His own is to build the barge, rent it out or sell it out. The weather in the place too was a problem especially when I was hungry. So I got fed up.

Q: Why didn’t you learn how to make barges yourself from your Uncle? Or you didn’t want to learn how to make barges?

That’s not what I discussed with him actually. I told him I have finished my photography work and I just need money to finish my studies. My Uncle told me he does not have that kind of money. But the best he can do for me is put me in the line of working in the barge.

Q: So how did you get into this other line of business?

When things got rough with the dredging business, I called my friend and told him things are rough with me here (Nigeria) that’s when my friend now ask me to come in 2016.

Q: So what happened in Ghana? What were you now doing in Ghana?

We are doing the yahoo yahoo.

Q: Where exactly in Ghana?

Kasoa.

Q: How long were you there for?

I was there like 8 months.

Q: So you were living with your friend there? How were you paying or compensating him for living in his house?

There was no compensation because he’s my childhood friend. We went to the same secondary school. The agreement we have is that if I collect money, then the percentage we’ll share it. If I collect N300,000 we can share it 40/60 because he’s the one providing for the network and feeding. That’s how they do it everywhere. Everybody that travels to Ghana that’s how they do it. It’s 40/60. Or some chairman the one that’s not greedy 50/50.

Q: Describe this your yahoo business for me.

Yahoo is kind of internet relationship. When you meet a woman.

Q: So you target women?

Yea its women. Some people do male one or female, depends on the one you want. You tell the woman that you love her and you want her to be your wife for the starting when you propose to her if she agree.  For the first week you push love to her then may be for the second week you still push love to her. From there she will give you her number so you can be communicating with her so both of you can be talking. Then may be she can tell you that you cannot be talking on phone-phone that she want you to come over. That’s when she’s in love. She’ll tell you to come over. Because them they believe in love. Once they tell you that they’re in love they’re really in love.

Q: Which kind of women are you targeting? African women or …?

Any woman. Let me say in Africa, only South African women because it is the currency we’re looking at. We target women in Germany, U.S, Italy, London,

Q: So do you target this women? You look at their profile or you randomly choose anyone you want?

We bond them through Facebook. Facebook show your location, your name. So you can use your name and put your phone number and everything about you will show. And if you like to accept you accept, and if you don’t like to accept…

Q: So once I accept your friendship, the next thing you’ll be sending me messages?

We’ll be chatting.

Q: How long does it take before a woman gives in?

It depends on how long it takes for the woman to fall in love. In the past it used to take two weeks for her to ‘fall in love’. But these days it can take up to three years because many are now aware that there are scammers. So most of them are very careful. So if you tell her you love her, she will say no, because most of them have been played before. Those ones that have been played before will tell us so and so person did this to me. Those types of women, we leave them. No need wasting time with them. Once they tell you they’ve been played before its best to leave them because nothing you’ll tell that person will change them. You dump her and look for another one. Those who have money will give you.

Q: What language do you speak to these women?

For English women, you speak English. For Spanish women, you download an App to translate English to Spanish or English to German or English to Portuguese.

Q: When did you start Yahoo business?

January 2016. But my friend has been in it since 2013.

Q: How much do you make on a weekly or monthly basis?

Money doesn’t come in like that. But within a month, if you meet a woman who fall for you, you can get as much as $3,000 – $4,000. Once she pays you that money, you leave her for some time so you can build trust. Else if you demand too quick after the first one, she will not believe you.

Q: What do you tell her that moves her to give you such money?

The type of work I’m doing is what I used to get her. I tell her I’m an engineer. I pose as an engineer working at sea into rig drilling. That’s the only way to get a vacation from my boss. Then I’ll tell her to write to him because he’s the only one who can grant me my vacation since I’m not due for leave yet. And the only way to get out of the sea is through a helipad. If she can pay for that, plus other expenses like ground transportation, accommodation and feeding, then I can be with her fast fast. So the cost will be like $3,000 to hire the helipad plus another $1,000.

Q: But how does she know which company you work for?

I design a website that looks exactly like a popular offshore drilling website company but my pictures will not be on it because once she sees who I really am, she won’t fall for it. So I will send the company email to her which I have already created. She now writes to by ‘boss’ using that email. But the email is coming back to me. I will now reply to the email as the ‘boss’ telling her that “the message she sent has been received. And will get back to her in a few days.” After she has received this first email she’ll now copy it and send it to me to say this was the response she got from my boss.

Two days later, the ‘boss’ will now write back to me saying: “We have granted the vacation. Since this is not his normal vacation time, it will require a helipad to take him out from the sea.”

She will now copy this and send to me. That is when I will now tell her it would cost $3,000-$4,000 to pay for the helipad that will take him out of the sea to land including expenses for hotel, feeding and accommodation.

Q: How does she send the money to you?

We keep a collection of women on the internet for different reasons. Some we propose marriage to and keep promising them that to keep the relationship going but tell them we’re struggling in Nigeria with a business we want to grow so that when need for her arises like in transferring money from one European country to another, she provides the bank account needed for the transaction. By this time I would have told her I only trust her and I have a big contract in Nigeria worth $300,000 that is going to run for a year and six months (or whatever time I like to give her), but because I don’t have all the money yet to execute it, I will tell her I’m asking money from friends and families within and outside Nigeria to help me with some money so I can succeed in the business. Then the monies would be sent to her account and after the contract is done, the entire money will be paid into her account then we can be together. I will now ask her to assist too since the other monies will be dropping into her account. Because the woman sees herself as wife to be married to me, her future husband she believes me. So when I get a new client ready to pay money, I will reach out to my ‘wife’ who now provides me with the bank account and the money is wired in it. Already I’m posing as a non-Nigerian. And although I am in Nigeria, I’m working as a contractor but don’t have an account yet. I will now tell her to send the money to my supervisor who is a black man. Then I will provide her with my own account details. Or any other account needed for the purpose.

Q: Is the pickup woman part of the yahoo team?

No she’s not. She’s just like the other women looking for love too who I have already proposed to.

Q: Why send the money through her? Are you not worried she will keep it for herself?

There’s a lot of problems that will come up if I give her my account. Money transfer from inter country takes 6-7 days. And if you use your own account, your face as a black man will show and that will terminate the transactions.

Q: At what point does the woman know that she’s been deceived?

She cannot know. She does not know. The only time she begins to think so is when her daughter, friends or even husband tells her that the person she’s dealing with is scamming her.

Q: From the point she sends in the first money, how long does it take from that time for her to know she’s been scammed?

It takes a while. Even after the first payment, some of them will send more money again as long as she doesn’t realise. But once she realises, she would stop. In the past it used to take four years of continuously sending money before she realises she’s being scammed. But these days it may not take up to two years.

Q: How many women have you gotten money from like this?

Since 2016 till December 2018 I only succeeded in getting two women to give me money. But I have spoken to many women who think I’m in love with them. Many of them are genuinely in love but don’t have money. The reason being that once you mention money even after you have proposed to them and keep promising love, some will tell you they don’t have or will just stop talking to you.

Q: How much have you made since 2016-2018?

We split the money into 60/40. So the money that has come to me is up to N3.5 million naira.

Q: What do you do with this money? 

I use it for myself and give my sisters too. I also have cousins I share it with.

Q: Do they know that this is how you got the money between 2016 and 2018? They didn’t ask you?

I told them I was travelling. And even after I came back to Nigeria and continued, they don’t know what I do. I don’t stay with them. I stay with my friend and we live very far from them even though we’re all in Abraka. They call me whenever they need money and I send it to them.

Q: Why did you leave Ghana?

My friend asked us to come back to Nigeria with the promise that we will return to Ghana. But to my surprise, he said we were no longer going back. He deceived me. I was very angry at him because his attitude towards me changed. It wasn’t about money. I quarreled with him. Another friend of his, a guy in the same line of business came between us. I was very angry with my friend so I left him. Later he came to beg me and I went back to stay with him.

Q: Why didn’t you just go back to Ghana on your own?

There was no money.

Q: At what point did you now add ‘ritual killings’ to your business?

It was after we got to Nigeria when the money was no longer coming in again like before. That was one of the reasons I quarreled with my friend. Nigeria wasn’t favourable. I even went back to loading tipper and dredging sand to see if I can raise money but I wasn’t even making enough money to save so that we can use it to go back to Ghana.

Q: So who introduced you to ‘ritual killings’?

My friend, Emese, who was here with us in the prison. But he’s dead now.

Q: Are you convinced ‘ritual’ gave you the money?

To me what I see there is that it’s just being manipulator. Let me say so. Or is just when things will just happen. Now I don’t believe that anybody on earth, nobody can tell me this kind of thing.

Q: Desmond you took the lives of 5 girls. Elozino was not drunk, nor drugged but awake while you guys cut her up … How did you feel when you were doing that? How were you able to do that Desmond?

It was not easy to do. But that was why I drink.

Q: But that was not your first time, Desmond. You did it 5 times. Each of the times you did it to the girls, they begged you to stop? Were they not crying?

YES.

Q: So when you saw the tears and heard their begging, how come that didn’t move you to stop? Why didn’t you feel sorry enough to let them go, to free the girls?

It’s because of what the herbalist told us. That was why we were afraid. He said we would go mad or die.

Since Desmond made his confession, he is still very much alive in 2019, several months since he committed the act in 2018.

ONORIODE’S CONFESSION:

Q: How Old are you?

23 years

Q: How long have you been a security man in Abraka?

6 months. Sometime in May. Before June.

Q: Before this time, what were you doing?

I was studying nursing at a private hospital in Eku. Life Care Hospital.

Q: What kind of nurse were you? Auxiliary or Regular?

Auxiliary

Q: What was your job in the hospital?

I learn how to stitch people. I can stitch. After that, we learn pharmacy, to know more about drugs. I go chemist go learn drugs. You can discuss with the person to do apprentice for 6 months or 1 year.

Q: Why did you want to learn about drugs?

Because nurses just treat and do stitches and put drugs into drips using injection but don’t know drugs. That’s all they know. But when you go into pharmacy, you know more drugs. That is the reason why I go to pharmacy, to know more drugs.

Q: How long did you practice as an auxiliary nurse?

2 years.

Q: How many hospitals did you go to learn this auxiliary nursing? 

Nursing was in Eku, Life Care Hospital. I Learn how to treat, how to pass drip. But I do pharmacy in Obiarukwu.

Q: What year did you learn all these?

2015 to 2018.

Q: So before 2015 what were you doing?

I wasn’t doing anything then. I finished my secondary school in 2007.

Q: So between 2007 and 2013, what were you doing these 6 years?

I was farming in Abraka.

Q: What kind of farming were you into?

Cassava farming.

Q: Was it your land or you rented it?

Family land

Q: How was the business back then?

It was okay.

Q: So why did you leave it to enter nursing? 

I cannot just rely on farming every time. I must look for something to do.

Q: Was the farming not a good business? If it was paying, why leave it?

I always love nursing. That’s why I go for the nursing.

Q: Why didn’t you study for JAMB (Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board conducted exam for every student seeking entrance to university), pass your exams and go to university to learn it instead?

I no get helper.

Q: Are you the first child? How many are you?

My father has three wives. Out of the three wives children, I am the last. My mother has 5 children and my stepmother has 6 children. And the third wife has 2. But my father is late. He died in 1995.

Q: But you do everyday business? And you make some money too?

Yes.

Q: So why didn’t you use the funds to help you further your education if you made money from farming?

What I plan before as I finish the nursing, na to open chemist so better income will help me further my education.

Q: So what now happened that you didn’t open the chemist or go to school, but instead became a security man? What happened between this time? 

I go to the chemist union. Dem tell me that before I fit open a chemist shop, I must be a union member as they cannot allow me run chemist shop without joining association first. That was when they tell me I have to register with N300,000, plus I will buy drinks and kill goat as part of the registration process before they will allow me stock my store with medicines, apart from the money to rent the store, employ a store keeper, and so on, so I gave up and tell myself to focus on other things or business until I can meet up with the requirements.

Q: So how did you get into this business of using human parts? 

It was Desmond’s friend who introduced me to it. We all live in the same community in Abraka.

Q: What is the friend’s name? 

Emudiaga Emese. He is from Umeghe. I am from Ovuso/Abraka. Mudiagha who is boss to Desmond came to meet one day like that asking if I remember him. I said yes. That was when he told he will teach me about his business so I can join him. He asked me if I didn’t admire him for how he has money? I said yes, I’ll like to. He now said he will put me in line so I can learn how to make money like him.

Q: Police record shows that before you got your job as a security guard in Abraka University you were put in jail. How did you get to be in prison?

I was arrested sometime in January/February of 2014 and released in December 2015. What happened was that there was a party in my compound. Someone brought a car into the compound with another person but by morning that person died. So what happened was that police raid the area and pack all of us into cell. They charged us to court then sent to prison. This happened when courts go on strike. So when I was supposed to get bail, court did not sit. So that was how I was kept in jail for one year. The court was waiting for DPP advice, so they kept me there in jail in Sapele Prison.

Q: Are you a cult member? 

No.

Q: Who bailed you out from prison? 

My mother and older brothers get lawyer for me. I am the youngest of my mother’s children.

Q: When you came out of prison, what happened before you became security guard in Delta State University (DELSU)? 

It was after I came out of prison I went to learn nursing work.

Q: So when exactly did they recruit you?

  • But they only approach me to join them for ritual killings after I started work as a security guard in DELSU.

Q: During this time you were ‘moving about’ with them, what were you guys doing? 

Because Mudiagha had money, he will come to and take us in his car and then we all stroll together.

Q: What do you mean by stroll together?

We go to beer parlours to drink, carry girls, tour the town then go back home.

Q; When you carry girls. What do you do to them? 

If it is a girl Mudiagha wanted to use, we carry the girl, get her drunk, take her to the bush and thereafter take the parts we want.

Q: Do you drug the drinks the girls take?

No we don’t drug their drinks. Is just a simple thing we do. We get in the car, girls see us in this beautiful car and they agree to join us then we go to a beer parlour and just get her drunk.

Q: Which kinds of girls do you target? How you know if you speak to a particular girl she will do your bidding? 

We don’t target the girls! Girls dem too like cars! They like to flex, have fun, party. So when they see a young boy with a car they like to hang out with you. We don’t even spin them before they just jump into the car because they assume that before you can own a car, it means you’re loaded. You have money. So they just follow you.

Q: So how many girls have you gone and targeted like that with Desmond and Mudiagha that you were a part of? 

5.

Q: How much have you made from this online money since you started 2 years ago? 

Sometimes I get N50,000 or N100,000

The next question is directed to Desmond

Q: Is that how much you give him, Desmond?

DESMOND: It depends on how the money comes. Sometimes Onos gets N200,000.

ONORIODE: You have never given me up to N200,000 at once.

DESMOND: Yes we have. 200,000 up to N300,000 sef. Will I lie against you (he turns to look at Onoriode).

ONORIODE: But I don’t have a say on how they share the money. They are the bosses that does the sharing. So whatever they give me as my share I simply take it.

Q: So how many times did you collect N50,000 and N100,000 separately? 

ONORIODE: I was given money 5 times. I collected N100,000 on three different occasions. Then N50,000  on 3 different occasions too.

Q: So between 2016-2018 you made at least N550,000?

Yes.

Q: What did you do with the money?

I used it to buy shoes and clothes.

Q: Did you give any of the money out as gifts to anyone? Family? Friends? 

  1. I flex with the money: beer parlours, nights in hotels, buy suya, spend money on restaurant food, and so on.

Q: Out of the N550,000 you made, who did you share part of the money with?

Nobody.

Q: Not even your mother?

NO.

Q: Why didn’t you give anybody out of the money?

You know, when money is in your hands, all you think of is have your bath, think of the next place to go and spend money and just flex around. You hear there’s a birthday party, and other such things and you’re there. Just like that that’s how I spent the money.

Q: So this period you didn’t extend any money gift to your mother or sister like a way of showing care or supporting them?

NO.

Q: So why did you take the security work in Abraka since you’re already making money through this?

I use it to patch up.

Q: Who recommended you to the management of Abraka to hire you? 

Abraka na my area. I know it well and I am part of the community so they know me. I already know the man in charge of security too. So I approached him for the job and got it.

Q: What other reason did you have for applying for this security job? 

To gather myself up to raise enough to start my chemist shop.

Q: Why did you go after Elozino, the last girl? 

It was just a coincidence. We already get a plan to get a girl for the next ritual as the jazz man tell us to do. So our mind is set to look out for a girl that will provide the parts for us. So when the opportunity just show the day after we had discuss, and this girl approached me two days before na then I make up my mind that she go be the one. So I tell my guys. So when she show up the next day we kidnap her.

Q: In what condition were you guys when you carry out this act? Do you take any drink?

DESMOND: Yes. I take a lot of alcohol and spirits before we go out to do it. I take up to half bottle.

ONORIODE: Me I no dey take anything. No drink. No drugs. No smoking of any kind.

Q: So you do it with clear eyes, Onos?

Nods his head in the affirmative.

Q: Why do you take drink before you start, Desmond?

I take it so that when I feel the pain, because na human being like me too, na that alcohol go give strong mind to finish the work.

Q: So Onos, you said you do it with your eyes wide open, no weed, no alcohol or drugs to douse your senses. And you have done it 5 times like that?

Wetin we just talk be say e tell me say if we do this one finish before, we go get money.  So na the stuff, money wey be say I no get naim make me fit do am.

Q: So you don’t feel sorry for the girls you’re doing this to as long as it’s money you’re after? 

It’s not as if I don’t feel sorry for them. I feel sorry. But based on the fact that I have struggled to get money and haven’t succeeded, I just focus on the work so I can get the money.

Q: But you already have a job as a security guard. Why did you have to take this girl’s life?

ONORIODE: Wetin be N20,000? That one na money?

Q: Onos, since you started this ritual business, have you made money? 

ONORIODE: No. no. no. I have not made money.

Q: So if after all this time, you didn’t make money, why did you continue? 

ONORIODE: It is because the Baba, the Jazz Man, promise that this last one will bring us money. He said we will go mad or die if we talk.

Q: But the man promised you this, 1sttime, 2nd, 3rd, and 4thtime, yet did not fulfil this promise and the money you’re looking for you didn’t get it, why go for the 5thone?

ONOS: The Baba promise that this 5thone is what will give us the money.

Q: So why didn’t the others give you money?

ONORIODE: The Baba said he was testing us to see whether we will reveal the secret and now that he’s sure we will not do so, he then promise us that this 5thone will bring us the money. He said if we follow through on this one we will get money from it.

Q: The baba who is promising you all these riches, how rich is he?

ONOS: No he’s not as rich.

Q: Where does the herbalist live?

ONOS: In Warri. Alegbo Axis. He lives in the last street before Alegbo Primary School.

Q: Do people in the area know him for his ritual activity?

DESMOND: No. I’m not sure. But we hear people address him Doctor. They call the Baba Doctor. The man na herbalist.

Q: What is the role of your fellow security man who is in custody? Many feel you just named him to rope in.

ONORIODE: See the matter. He did not join us in any ritual cutting. But the thing is that anybody who drives into the school with a car must have the car searched and because he is head of security at the post he has veto power to search and approve any car passing at the main gate. So there was no way my guys can leave the school without being searched after we have capture the girl in the car. So I tell him about the deal and told him one of my big bros is a Ghana Burger and he has money. I discuss this with him two days before we get the girl.

Q: So you told this senior security man that this your boss is a Ghana Burger and he has money?

Yes. So I told him we cannot do this without his permission, and he’ll get his cut after we succeed. He asked me what I mean. So I explain to him that the person we wanted to carry is within the school premises and since he’s the one always at the gate, we need his help as the supervisor to allow our vehicle pass out of the gate without check. That we need him to pass the order so that the junior security men at the post will allow the car pass through without being held up. Once he give the order to raise the bar at the gate, nobody will challenge it because he’s the supervisor. Any order he gives they must obey him. After I explain all this to him he accept the offer and promise to do his part. The other part of the arrangement was for him to post me on my next shift to the lecturer’s lodge area the next day since I had already made arrangement with my guys to call the girl to meet me where she met me the day before. If I no reach arrangement with him, he will post me elsewhere. Because the lecturers lodge is very far we can carry our plan and nobody will see us. Any other security post by the roundabout or near the school gates is not a good hiding place. So the supervisor agree.

Q: How much did you promise to give the supervisor, the head of security?

ONORIODE: I did not mention bulk amount to him. But I told him he will get some huge cash. I tell am say better money go enter eim hand. And I know too that once we made the money the supervisor could get up to N30,000 to N40,000.

Q: What’s the supervisor’s name?

ONORIODE: Supervisor’s name is Uche Benedict Nwosisi

Q: From your experience now, does ritual killing actually bring in money?

DESMOND: NO. Na circumstances they make everything correct, just rhyme. Let me say, is just being manipulator or is just the way things will just happen.

ONORIODE: I be follow follow first. I never sabi.

DESMOND: Onos know everything already. Na the yahoo dey give us money.

Q: But since you do the ritual e bring money for you?

ONOS: e no bring money for me.

Q: So, if e no bring money for you why you kon dey do am dey go till you kill 5 girls?  Sense dey the thing?

ONOS: No sense

Q: So why did you continue doing it when you realised there was no sense in continuing killing more girls? 

AWKWARD SILENCE

Q: So what will happen to you now?  Do you know what will happen to you going forward? 

DESMOND and ONORIODE: I don’t know.

Q: What do you think you deserve to be done to you for what you both did to those 5 girls? 

DESMOND: Imprisonment.

Q: Is that the only thing you deserve? 

SILENCE

Q: what about you Onos? What do you deserve for all the atrocities you committed?

LIFE imprisonment

Q: So if you’re to give advice to people who think ritual brings money, what would you say to them? 

DESMOND: That it is not how to make money. You make money with your hands, and make money from the right source, not quick money. If you have opportunity fine. But if you don’t have, you wait until God blesses you.

Q: What if you get hungry, is it enough to do this kain thing? 

DESMOND: If you’re get hungry then you die. But I know that hunger does not kill somebody.

ONORIODE: it is better to build with your hand than to do this.

Q: how many were you in this yahoo ring in Ghana?

Me, my friend and two other guys from Nigeria.

Q: Where in Ghana were you living? 

Kasoa. Many Nigerians are into yahoo in Ghana. We are many. They are still there. We all stayed in a popular estate, Obo(lu) Estate in Kasoa. Kasoa is big. Take a bike and tell them you want to get to Obolu estate. They’ll take you there. They will ask which of the estate. So you tell them but I can’t remember the exact name of ours. But when you say Obolu estate, they will take you there. The man Obolu has many estate. So you’ll have to tell them the specific estate because the Obolu estate is very big and there are different estates there too.

Q: The police thinks ritual killings with yahoo boys started from Ghana. Except you don’t know it? 

DESMOND: People do it here in Nigeria before them go Ghana. They are the ones who introduced it in Ghana. A week, two weeks they have made money then they now come back to Nigeria. But when I was there in Ghana for eight months (2016-2017), there was nothing like ritual killing.

Desmond and Onoriode are currently under trial in Delta State, and the status of their conviction is yet to be determined.

This story is supported by WanaData a project of Code For Africa

Source: Confession of Yahoo Plus Boys“Ritual does not give us money” – Suspects

This story was – one day earlier – published by The Guardian (Nigeria), on November 7, by the same author Ejiro Umukoro:
Ritual does not give us money, Yahoo Plus boys confess
(webmaster FVDK).

Nigeria, Oyo State: Court remands prophet who killed woman for ‘money ritual’

Published: June 26, 2019
By: Odita Sunday  

An Iyaganku Chief Magistrates’ Court in Ibadan, yesterday ordered that four men accused of strangling a woman to death be remanded in Agodi Prison, pending legal advice. The Chief Magistrate, Emmanuel Idowu, who did not take the pleas of Dotun Ogunlade, 24; Mutiu Ayorinde, 32; Samuel Ayorinde, 34; and Kehinde Imole, 27, ordered the police to return the case file to the Oyo State Directorate of Public Prosecutions ( DPP).

Idowu, thereafter, adjourned the case until July 23, for mention. The prosecutor, ASP Amos Adewale, told the court that the defendants allegedly conspired to commit the offence. Adewale said: “On May 29, at 10:00p.m., Ogunlade, Ayorinde and Imole allegedly caused the death of Mrs. Bosede Oguntunde, aged 25, by strangling her to death.

“The deceased, a married woman from Ilorin, was alleged to have been a Facebook friend to Ogunlade, a prophet, who invited her to his Igboora residence over her marital problem. On her arrival at Ogunlade’s residence, he allegedly gave her an overdose of sleeping drugs and strangulated her to death; and later cut off her head, two hands and burnt them for money ritual,” said Adewale.

Source: Court remands prophet who strangled woman he met on Facebook to death

Related article: Oyo police nab 35 for robbery, kidnapping, cultism

Nigeria – political map