Inside the scary world of Nigeria’s ritual money pandemic

In the following article a grim picture is being painted of the widespread occurrence of ritualistic practices in Nigeria, based on the belief in the supernatural, superstition, and with the main objective of ‘getting-rich-quick’. These ritualistic practices may take different forms, varying from internet fraud to human sacrifice. It is being recognized that most ritual murder cases ‘escape the headlines’.

Warning: some readers may be shocked by the graphic details of the heinous crimes committed (FVDK).

Inside the scary world of Nigeria’s ritual money pandemic

Teens arrested in Abeokuta, Ogun State over murder of a teenager girl

Published: February 7, 2022
By: Business Hallmark, Nigeria

A few days ago, a video of three young boys captured conveying python in a travel bag in Owerri, Imo State trended on social media. The boys who were caught at Aladinma Housing Estate on January 26, upon interrogation, admitted to being Yahoo boys who got the live snake for money ritual purposes.

Stories such as the above, have become common in Nigeria where the belief in the supernatural is an integral part of the social fabric. From poverty to wealth; from life to death and everything in-between, nothing happens without a reason. And a new rave of money ritual is currently sweeping across the country’s landscape, intertwined with the menace of internet fraud.

It’s a world ruled by blood, sacrifice and death; a world in which young men, sometimes as young as 15, do unspeakable evil in the belief that money is made from performing human sacrifices, and for the most part, they escape the headlines.

Internet fraud, or simply Yahoo-Yahoo, took root in Nigeria with the emergence of the internet and its prevalent use from around 2005/06. It was when a new crop of big boys known as Yahoo boys began to emerge; young men who defrauded mostly European and Americans in love scams, with Benin as a hub.

But soon it spread, like wildfire, across the country, and graduated from mere posing as American soldier in Afghanistan, a widower in desperate need for life partner, etc, to full blown ritualism, hacking and fraudulent investment schemes, all of which are ecaplulated in a term known as Yahoo Plus (Yahoo+) or G+.

Fortnight ago, two teenage boys, Soliu Majekodunmi (18) and Mustakeem Balogun (19) were caught while boiling the head of a 17-year-old girl, Sofiat Kehinde, at Oke Aregba area of Abeokuta, Ogun State. They confessed to have murdered her for ritual purposes, an incident that jolted many Nigerians. But it’s not an isolated incident.

About the same time, 32-year-old suspected internet fraudster, Afeez Olalere who was arrested by operatives of the Lagos State Police Command, confessed that his mother encouraged him to kill his younger brother for money rituals.

Afeez Olalere
Afeez Olalere

“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 mine,” he had said, revealing that his mother encouraged him to kill his 21 year-old brother which he did with the help of a poison.

According to him, his brother died 20 minutes after consuming the poison and he went ahead to harvest the required body parts while the remains was wrapped and headed to a mortuary.

“The things he would need to prepare a concoction with are his thumbs, his hair, fingers and a passport photograph, he narrated. “So, we went back home and thought about it, then my mother suggested that we use my younger brother since he is just 21 years old.”

Stories of ritual murder have become weekly occurrence, driven by internet fraud which has become a whole industry, steeped in blood and human sacrifice. Some accounts of which are traumatising. In the East, there is an emerging ritual trend known variously as Okeite, Awelle and so on, in which young men, sometimes teenagers, perform blood sacrifices for money.

The deities, our correspondents learnt from different accounts, keep demanding such things as goats, cows and even humans as sacrifice, from time to time. And once one is in, there is no way out.

“Young people who are supposed to be the leaders of tomorrow now engage in unimaginable crimes just to become millionaires overnight,” lamented Ben Bruce, former senator in a tweet at the weekend. What has suddenly gone wrong with young people who now believe that rituals involving human blood will make them rich? So many Nigerians go missing daily, and while many are never found. Some are found dead with body parts missing. We must work to stop this trend. The narrative that poverty and unemployment get young people into ritual killings must not be accepted.”

Mostly at the receiving end of the menace are young girls who are lured with money and used for ritual through sex. The practice according to many accounts, is that the ritualists deposit their sperms into the unsuspecting girls who either become barren for the rest of their lives or rot away gradually.

“I have a cousin that was used,” Ope Folorunsho, an artisan in Ojodu, Lagos, confirmed to our correspondent upon inquiry. “The girl lives at Alagbole now with her parents. She is just in her early 20s, but she no longer sees her period. Her parents have done everything possible, gone to different hospitals, to no avail. When they finally decided to seek solution in traditional way, they were told that she had been used for ritual and that she won’t be able to give birth in her life. Her friends told me that she dated a Yahoo boy who bought her iPhone 11 Pro Max.”

Another account has it that some would deposit sperms into women whose body gradually rot away as they make money. Last week, a twitter user, Afam, @AfamDeluxo, who has been raising awareness about the menace of ritual money in the Southeast, shared the story of a friend whose 18-year-old cousin, was used.

“During my bachelors night, one of my friends that did Okeite came. He paid for seven fishes which was about N40,000 and bought two cartons of Heineken. We where all drinking and I was surprised he had already paid for things which we haven’t even eaten,” the victim’s uncle narrated.

“And it was about 11pm in the night. All of a sudden my cousin’s sister left. I didn’t see her until morning. She didn’t partake in the bridal shower. When I saw her in the morning and asked her where she went, she said she went out with my friend that bought the fish. Summary of the story: My cousin sister is fighting for her life now. From one dibia to another.

“On the 4th of Jaunary when I went for a wedding in my villa, I told the father what happened on my bachelors night. That maybe they should find a good man of God to pray for her. The father said that one native doctor said that it has already gotten deep and that it will take a lot for her to revive. The native doctor also said she was used for ritual.

“She is currently in Kogi. She is just 18 years. I warned this girl not to go out unless she wants to go to her room or like to sleep. The plot twist of the whole matter is that the elder brother contacted the guy that used her sister and asked him to show him the way. The guy gave him N1 million and sent location to him.”

Teens arrested while conveying snake in a bag
Teens arrested in Owerri while conveying snake in a bag

In late January, the Osun State police command arrested two ritualists, Ayodeji Saheed and Tunde Obadimeji, who had allegedly murdered a young woman in a hotel. The hotel management had suspected foul play when the victim screamed twice and after that, no noise was heard again from the room.

According to the management when the two men were about going, they were asked to be escorted back to the room to see if everything was fine and why the girl they came with wasn’t leaving with them. When they returned to the hotel room, they met the lifeless body of the young woman with vital organs already removed from her body.

Upon interrogation, the two men confessed to murdering the lady for ritual. According to them, it was not their first. They admitted to having killed as much as 70 women as they specialized in getting female parts and one Abefe Sadiq who pays them N600,000 for each part.

Asked how they get these girls, they said, “getting the girls was so easy. We lure them with money and fancy things.”

There is yet another dimension. Our investigations revealed that some travelled all the way to Uzo Uwani in Enugu State where they bury live cow.

“They go to a place to go to in Uzo Uwani,” a source familiar with the practice confided on our correspondents on the condition of anonymity. “When you go there, you get a form for $1000. And after that, the conditions will be tabled before you, which include burying a live cow. If you are ready, you proceed. Burying the cow will have implications, of course. It cannot be for nothing. Some other things that are more grave may happen.”

Asked how money is made after the sacrifice, the source said, “The money doesn’t just drop for them like that. The thing is that when you have clients, the client will respond.

“You know, what they do is more of binary. You invest money and they pay you back the money with interest, till they build your confidence and when you pay huge money, they will block you,” he explained.

“They set up all these ROI schemes; these fake investment schemes. They front websites that are very neat. The victims won’t have an idea that it’s fake. Initially, they make sure they pay back the investments, most of them, even when they are broke, will borrow to make sure they pay their clients so that they can reinforce their confidence.

“They know that the money will still come back. If they pay 100 people for example, 60 will reinvest in a bigger way. Some of them start with small amount, the scammers will keep paying them back. With time, they will become confident that the scheme is real and probably take a loan to invest, then they will block everything and go with the money.

“The way they set up the website, you will never know they are Nigerians. They use UK phone lines, and most of them have mastered British and American accents. I think there is also an app they use to change their tones. So, when they speak to you, you won’t know they are not British or Americans.

“If you go to their pages, of course, everything about them is different. They have foreign accounts. Those who don’t have foreign accounts have people who collect the money for them. There are people who work as intermediaries. They accept money on their behalf, take their own percentage and send the rest to them in Nigeria.”

Mr. Maxwell Odum, the CEO of MBA Investment Company which swindled billions of naira out of unsuspecting investors, among many other similar schemes, comes to mind. Yet, determined to find out more about this ritual, our correspondent contacted a traditionalist, Eze Gbankiti, who shed more light into the practice.

“Burying life cow is tantamount to killing a human being,” he said. “I know some of my colleagues who accept to do it, but I don’t engage in such practice because it’s evil. It’s not just a cow, some use ram or cat. Once you bury a live cow, ram or cat, someone must die in the family of the person doing the sacrifice.”
The traditionalist further explained that such ritual can indeed bring money, but that there will eventually be consequences.

“If you do that, money will come to you,” he said. “As with the Yahoo boys, they will get clients and the clients will respond to them. But it’s blood money.”

It’s worsening. By many accounts, the ritual fraudsters currently recruit young boys who they compel to swear an oath of allegiance, as apprentice.

“Our moral values are perverted and upturned right before our eyes, even as an evil and quite frightening norm is being set as the new normal,” lamented Evangelist Elliot Uko, founder of Igbo Youth Movement in a piece sent to our correspondent.

“Time-tested values of obedience, hard  work, patience, diligence and respect, are discredited and mocked at, even as the new culture of get-rich-quick by all means slowly takes over our land. Every discerning citizen is scared of tomorrow. The values we are setting today as standard, will certainly destroy our tomorrow. We are unwittingly destroying our future by encouraging EGO NBUTE.

“All over our land, in recent years, self-appointed wizards, sorcerers and occultic masters, establish emergency solution ministries, where they assure young men and women, that drowning rams and goats in the stream, while bathing naked with Indian incense, perfume and coloured candles under the supervision of the Prophet or Prophetess, will turn them into instant multi millionaires in few months or even weeks.

“These Psychics and mediums of powers of darkness brainwash these hapless, naive and very gullible young folks, that their fortunes will magically turn around for good in less than no time, once these humiliating rituals are performed. They sometimes pressure their mugus to make promises of buying and donating cars in gratitude to the man or woman of “god”, immediately great door of financial explosion occur in their lives.

“These have become an epidemic, overtaking mkpuru nmiri addiction, as the number one social crisis ravaging our land. They exploit social media to advertise their ‘wonderful’ powers, to hoodwink their victims. It’s catching on like wild fire. The hard times we are in, and grave joblessness in the land probably accentuated the madness.”

EFCC Part of the Problem 

Though Nigeria’s anti corruption agency, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), has continued to present itself as fighting the menace of internet fraud by, among other things, posting photographs of suspected fraudsters on their various social media platforms, as well as routinely invading hotels in search of the fraudsters, our investigation revealed something different.

Many sources, including lawyers who have served as counsel to accused fraudsters and the fraudsters themselves told our correspondents that officials of the anti corruption agency routinely collect bribes and destroy cases of arrested suspects, which according to them, partly explains why the menace is not abating.

They alleged further that the night raids at hotels and the publishing of names of suspected fraudsters on social media are all part of media propaganda to present a different image of themselves to the public.

“EFCC knows all those things. What happens is that when they succeed and money comes in, often huge sums of money, the bank will flag it and EFCC will probe the account and start tracking the person,” an Enugu based lawyer who has worked as a counsel for a number of the fraudsters told our correspondent on condition of anonymity to avoid being victimized.

“Of course, they know where almost all of them are living. Whenever they want to take any of them, they will just go there and pick them,” he said.

“The point is that those guys make EFCC officials rich. It’s a racket. Those EFCC guys don’t even touch their salaries. Apart from probably NNPC and FIRS, that EFCC is the most lucrative agency of the federal government. I tell you, they even make more money than those working with FIRS.

“They have really damaged that anti corruption fight. If you go there and see what is going on, you will lose confidence in this country. What they do there is just plea bargaining. That’s why, as they are arresting people every day, people are still jumping into it. They know that all they simply need to do is to pay bribe when they are caught. And that makes things cumbersome for those of us in the legal profession.

“For instance, there was a time we had some clients to defend. We reached an agreement about our legal fees, but at the end of the day, the EFCC people went behind, collected money and damaged the case.

“There was another case we had in Awka. When it was time for hearing, the EFCC guys said that there was no flight from Enugu to Awka. Has there been any flights from Enugu to Awka? The case had to be stood down for another one hour, after which it was adjourned to another date. It could be that the person who the case was against had already paid, so the EFCC could just be employing delay tactics.”

Another lawyer who also craved anonymity said, “The runs they do in that agency is terrible. I hope that one day, someone will open that can of worms. That place is nothing. It is probably the most corrupt establishment in this country. If you work there for six months, you would have started riding any car of your choice. One Yahoo boy you get can pay you huge amounts of money.

“There was one day we were at a hotel called Ntachi, one G-guy brought a Ghana-Must-Go bag filled with money and dumped it inside the booth of an EFCC guy and afterwards, they all went up to eat.

“Those guys are more guilty than the people they are arresting. Forget all those media trials they are doing. It’s just show. They are not doing anything there. The only thing is that when government is interested in a case, they will pursue it. Then if you are not complying, they will will take your picture and publish and then parade you up and down, just like what SON does to manufacturers or importers who don’t settle them.

“They may bring your goods, burn it and bring the media to cover it. It’s just nonsense. But once you are complying, you won’t have a problem. Even if your case is already with them, they can take out the case file and burn it. They will arrange for you to even leave the country. Whenever they need your attention, you can come into the country again.

“That’s why, sometimes, they will tell you that this person’s passport has been seized, but you will see the person in the United States the next day. The rot there is nauseating. It’s just business. They only take your case seriously when you are not complying. They use you as a scapegoat just to give the impression that they are working.”

Speaking of the ritual practice that drives the Yahoo industry, he said, “From the ritual point of view, it’s made me to be careful about everybody. I’m scared of human beings these days. The whole thing is just assuming the ugliest of dimensions. The one videoed at Imo State where people shit and eat it is sad.

“People can argue logically that there is no way ritual can bring money. That is true within the context of logic. But if it doesn’t bring money, they won’t be going into it. That you don’t believe in God, for example, doesn’t mean that he doesn’t exist. His existence is not dependent on whether or not you believe.

“The ritual thing works for them, whether we agree or not. What I heard is that when they are done with that, they can command those people to pay them and they will comply. It’s not unlikely that it doesn’t work, because you see them making a lot of money doing those scams. And typically those who do those rituals are mostly those who make money in the business.”

When contacted by our correspondent to comment on the allegations, EFCC spokesperson, Wilson Uwajeren, asked that the questions be forwarded to him in a WhatsApp message for him to respond. Our correspondent obliged, but he failed to respond after reading the message.

Source: Inside the scary World of Nigeria’s ritual money pandemic

Nigeria: February 9, 2022: House of Representatives asks Federal Government to declare state of emergency on ritual killings

As far as I know it is unprecedented in the history of Nigeria: lawmakers have urged the government of president Buhari to declare a state of emergency on ritual killings in the country. Even continent-wise, it is a novelty, to my knowledge. It is symptomatic for the widespread occurrence of ‘money rituals’ in the country, as I have repeatedly stated here. 

No need to elaborate now on the details of the various (read: many) cases of ritualistic murders which motivated the House of Representatives of Africa’s most populated country to take this bold step. The news had a nation-wide coverage as is amply demonstrated by the nearly 30 newspaper articles cited (and partly reproduced) below – far from all publications on this historic decision. 

Warning:  some readers may find (some of) the following articles disturbing because of the graphic description of ritualistic activities. (FVDK)

Declare state of emergency on ritual killings —Reps to FG

Members of the House of Representatives during plenary

Published: February 9, 2022
By: Segun Adewole – Punch, Nigeria

The House of Representatives on Wednesday said a state of emergency on ritual killings in the country should be declared by the Federal Government.

The lawmakers also called for a campaign against the menace, saying the effort of parents, schools, religious leaders and the media is needed.

This is following a motion sponsored by Deputy Minority Leader of the House, Toby Okechukwu, who lamented that ritual killings have taken a new dimension in recent times.

He said, “There’s an upsurge of reported ritual killings with increasing cases of abductions and missing persons in different parts of the country, which in most cases, the culprits also rape, maim, kill and obtain sensitive body parts of unsuspecting victims for rituals.

“Merchants of such wicked acts often use social media as a ready tool to advertise their evil behaviour. Ritual killing has become a predominant theme in most homemade movies which if not checked, our younger generation may begin to view as an acceptable norm.

“There are several reports where law enforcement agents arrested and paraded suspects of ritual killings with gory pictures of human skulls and dismembered bodies.

“Fake clerics, imams, herbalists and native doctors are often complicit in the heinous practices. Although our communities are getting more religious with the proliferation of churches and mosques, the ugly trend of ritual killing is on the rise as the quest for wealth at all costs pervades our society.

“Youths in other climes are embracing science and technology as a way of maintaining pace with our dynamic world while some of our youths seem stuck in the mistaken belief that sacrificing human blood is the surest route to wealth, safety and protection.

“Such cruel and barbaric acts should no longer be promoted in our society given the demands of today’s world.”

The motion was unanimously adopted by the House which called on the Inspector-General of Police, Usman Alkali Baba to “take urgent steps to increase surveillance and intelligence gathering with a view to apprehend and prosecute all perpetrators of ritual killings in Nigeria”.

Copyright PUNCH.

Source: Declare state of emergency on ritual killings —Reps to FG

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Reps task IG on ritual killings

The House of Representatives – Photo Facebook / Speaker Gbaja

Published: February 9, 2022
By: NAN – The Guardian, Nigeria

The House of Representatives has charged the Inspector General of Police (I-G) to take urgent steps towards tacking ritual killings in the country.

This followed the adoption of a motion of urgent public importance by Rep Toby Okechukwu, the Deputy Minority Leader, at the plenary on Wednesday in Abuja.

Presenting the motion, Okechukwu said that incidents of ritual killings had assumed an alarming rate in Nigeria while decrying the upsurge of reported ritual killings with increasing cases of abductions and missing persons in different parts of the country.

He added that in most cases, the culprits also rape, maim, kill and cut out sensitive body parts of unsuspecting victims for rituals.

He said that the Red Cross Society in 2017 reported that it received 10,480 reports of missing persons in Nigeria.
“On Jan. 22, three teenage suspects and a 21-year-old reportedly killed one Sofiat Kehinde and severed her head and burnt in a local pot in Abeokuta, Ogun.

”The police command in Ogun on Feb. 7, reported that one of the suspects confessed that he learned the act of ritual killing from a video he watched on Facebook,” he stated.

He said that the death of Sofiat attracted national outrage and condemnation considering the age of the suspected killers.

The lawmaker said that merchants of such wicked acts often use the social media as a tool to advertise their evil acts.

He also mentioned the grievous killing of Iniobong Umoren, a young woman in her 20s; who was lured to a particular location in Uyo, Akwa Ibom for a job interview, as widely reported in the national dailies.

He also cited the gruesome killings and heinous activities of Badoo Boys in Lagos State, which was also reported in the national dailies.

“Ritual killing had become a predominant theme in most homemade movies which if not checked, our younger generation may begin to view it as an acceptable norm,” he said.

The House thereafter declared a national emergency on ritual killings and urged National Orientation Agency (NOA), stakeholders and the media to initiate a campaign towards changing the situation in the country.

The House tasked the Executive Director, National Film and Video Censors Board to rise to the mandate of the agency as the clearinghouse for all movies produced in the country.

Source: Reps task IG on ritual killings

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Reps Ask FG To Declare National Emergency On Ritual Killings

Screenshot – click on image in original to watch the video

Published: February 9, 2022
By: Terry Ikumi – Channels TV, Nigeria

The House of Representatives has called for the declaration of a national emergency on ritual killings across the country.

This formed part of the resolutions reached by the lawmakers on a motion of urgent public importance entitled ‘Need to Curb the Rising Trend of Ritual Killings in Nigeria’.

Mr Toby Okechukwu, the Minority Leader of the House, moved the motion during Wednesday’s plenary at the lower chamber of the National Assembly in Abuja.

The motion comes amid the incessant killing of innocent Nigerians for ritual purposes, with one of the latest being the murder of Sofiat Okeowo in Ogun State.

Worried about the trend, the lawmakers called on the National Orientation Agency (NOA), as well as parents, heads of schools, religious leaders, and the media to undertake a campaign to change the negative narrative bedevilling the society.

They resolved to call on the Executive Director of the National Film and Video Censors Board to rise to the mandate of the agency, as the clearinghouse for all movies produced in the country.

While moving the motion, Okechukwu called the attention of the House to the recent incidents of ritual killings which he said have assumed an alarming rate.

He condemned the upsurge of reported ritual killings with increasing cases of abductions and missing persons in different parts of the country, saying the culprits in most cases rape, maim, kill and obtain sensitive body parts of unsuspecting victims for rituals.

The Red Cross Society, according to him, reported that it received 10,480 reports of missing persons in Nigeria in 2017, and three teenage suspects and a 20-year-old were accused of killing Sofiat.

The lawmaker told his colleagues that the Ogun State Police Command later reported on Monday that one of the suspects confessed that he learned the act of ritual killing from a video he watched on Facebook.

He also condemned the killing of Iniobong Umoren, a woman in her 20s, after being lured to a location in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State for a job interview.

Okechukwu stressed the need to be mindful of the role of the Nigerian movie industry in moulding the behavioural patterns in the society, as well as the mandate of NFVCB and others.

The lawmakers mandated the House Committee on Information, National Orientation, Ethics, and Values to report back to the House within four weeks.

According to them, the Inspector General of Police should take urgent steps to increase surveillance and intelligence gathering, with a view to apprehend and prosecute all perpetrators of ritual killings in Nigeria.

Similarly, the House Committee on Police Affairs was mandated to report back to the lawmakers within four weeks.

Source: Reps Ask FG To Declare National Emergency On Ritual Killings

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Reps ask FG to declare state of emergency on ritual killings

Nigeria’s House of Representatives in session. Photo used for illustrative purposes.

Published: February 9, 2022
By: Vincent Ufuoma – ICIR, International Centre for Investigative Reporting

THE House of Representatives has asked the Federal Government to declare a state of emergency on ritual killings in the country.

This followed a motion moved by the House Deputy Minority Leader Toby Okechukwu during Wednesday’s plenary.

Okechukwu, who noted that ritual killings have assumed an alarming rate in Nigeria in recent times, lamented the increasing cases of abductions and missing persons in different parts of the country.

He said in most cases, the culprits also rape, maim, kill and obtain sensitive body parts of unsuspecting victims for rituals.

The lawmaker also decried the roles of various social groups, especially the entertainment industry, in reinforcing ritual killings among young people.

Okechukwu said, “Ritual killing has become a predominant theme in most home made movies which if not checked, our younger generation may begin to view it as an acceptable norm.

“There are several reports where law enforcement agents arrested and paraded suspects of ritual killings with gory pictures of human skulls and dismembered bodies.

“Fake clerics, imams, herbalists and native doctors are often complicit in the heinous practices.

“Although our communities are getting more religious with the proliferation of churches and mosques, the ugly trend of ritual killing is on the rise as the quest for wealth at all cost pervades our society.”

The lawmaker expressed worry that while youths in other climes were embracing science and technology as a way of maintaining pace with the world, some Nigerian youths were enmeshed in the belief that human sacrifice would bring them wealth, protection and security.

Adopting the motion, the House of Representatives asked the Inspector General of Police (IGP) Usman Baba Alkali to take urgent steps to increase surveillance and intelligence gathering with a view to fishing out, arresting and prosecuting the perpetrators of the ritual killings.

The House called on the National Orientation Agency (NOA), parents, heads of schools, religious leaders and the media to undertake a campaign to change the negative narrative that is bedeviling the society.

Subsequently, the House mandated its Committee on Information, National Orientation, Ethics and Values to ensure compliance of the resolution and report back within weeks.

Last month, a 20-year-old lady, Sofiat Kehinde was gruesomely murdered in Abeokuta, Ogun State capital by four teenage boys aged 17, 18, 19 and 20.

Sofiat’s head was severed by the boys and they were burning it in a pot for money ritual before they were apprehended.

The four teenage suspects arrested by the police are Soliu Majekodunmi, Wariz Oladehinde, Abdulgafar Lukman, and Balogun Mustaqeem.

They confessed to have conspired to kill Sofiat and played different roles in her murder.

One of the suspects, Mustaqeem, confessed that he was motivated by a post he saw on Facebook to murder Kehinde for money ritual.

He said, “I saw a post on Facebook that explained how to get rich quickly. I downloaded the video because I had interest in getting wealthy at an early stage. I wanted to get rich and lead a luxurious life.

“The video was what prompted me to tell Soliu about getting rich quickly at our early age. He was interested after I showed him the video on my phone and asked where we would get the materials we needed.”

Source: Reps ask FG to declare state of emergency on ritual killings

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Reps to FG: Declare national emergency on ritual killings in Nigeria

…ask IGP to arrest, prosecute perpetrators

…prompt NOA, parents, heads of schools, religious leaders, media to lead campaign against killings

Published: February 9, 2022
By: Levinus Nwabughiou, Abuja – Vanguard, Nigeria   

Jolted by the reports of incessant ritual killings across the country, the House of Representatives, Wednesday, asked the federal government to declare a national emergency on the social vice.

The House also asked the Inspector General of Police, IGP, Usman Baba Alkali to take urgent steps to increase surveillance and intelligence gathering with a view to fishing out, arresting and prosecuting the perpetrators of the killings.

The parliament also called on the National Orientation Agency, parents, heads of schools, religious leaders and the media to undertake a campaign to change the negative narrative that bedeviling the society.

The resolutions of the House came after it considered a motion titled “Need to Curb the Rising Trend of Ritual Killings in Nigeria”, presented at the plenary by the deputy minority leader, Hon. Toby Okechukwu under matters of urgent public importance.

Presenting the motion, Okechukwu noted that the incidents of ritual killings have assumed an alarming rate in Nigeria in recent times.

He said there was an upsurge of reported ritual killings with increasing cases of abductions and missing persons in different parts of the country, which in most cases, the culprits also rape, maim, kill and obtain sensitive body parts of unsuspecting victims for rituals.

He said: “The Red Cross Society in 2017 reported that it received 10,480 reports of missing persons in Nigeria.

“On January 22, 2022, three teenage suspects and a twenty year old reportedly killed one Sofiat Kehinde and had her head severed and burnt in a local pot in Abeokuta, Ogun State.

“Ogun State Police Command on Monday, February 7, 2022 reported that one of the suspects confessed that he learned the act of ritual killing from a video he watched on Facebook.”

The lawmaker recalled that the death of Sofiat has attracted national outrage and condemnation considering the ages of her killers.

“Merchants of such wicked acts often use the social media as a ready tool to advertise their evil behaviours.

“The grievous killing of Iniobong Umoren, a young woman in her 20s; after being lured to a particular location in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State for a job interview, as widely reported in the national dailies.

“The gruesome killings and heinous activities of Badoo Boys in Lagos State, which was also reported in the national dailies.

“Ritual killing has become a predominant theme in most home made movies which if not checked, our younger generation may begin to view it as an acceptable norm.

“Several reports where law enforcement agents arrested and paraded suspects of ritual killings with gory pictures of human skulls and dismembered bodies.

“Fake clerics, imams, herbalists and native doctors are often complicit in the heinous practices.

“Although our communities are getting more religious with the proliferation of churches and mosques, the ugly trend of ritual killing is on the rise as the quest for wealth at all cost pervades our society.”

Okechukwu expressed worry that while youths in other climes are embracing science and technology as a way of maintaining pace with our dynamic world, some of our youths seem stuck in the mistaken belief that sacrificing human blood is the surest route to wealth, safety and protection.

“Such cruel and barbaric acts should no longer be promoted in our society given the demands of today’s world.

“The growing rate of unemployment in the country.

“The moral decadence in our society, a trend that has promoted the get-rich-quick syndrome among our youths.

“The role of the Nigerian movie industry in moulding behavioral patterns in our society vis-a-vis the mandate of the National Film and Video Censors Board as a clearing house for movies produced in the country.

“A lot needs to be done by the Police and other law enforcement agencies to checkmate this ugly trend.

“The roles of parents, schools, religious leaders, and the urgent need to curb the increasing rate of ritual killings and other related vices.

“The House is mindful of the role of media as a tool to change this wrong narrative among our youths”, he said.

Adopting the motion, the House called on the Executive Director, National Film and Video Censors Board to rise to the mandate of the agency as the clearing house for all movies produced in the country.

It therefore mandated its Committee on Information, National Orientation, Ethics and Values ensure compliance of the resolution and report back to the House within weeks.

Source: Reps to FG: Declare national emergency on ritual killings in Nigeria

More: 

Lawmakers blame Nigerian movies for surge in ritual killings, declare national emergency

Teens arrested in Abeokuta, Ogun State over murder of a teenager girl

Published: February 9, 2022
By: Business Hallmark News, Nigeria

Nigeria’s House of Representatives on Wednesday declared a national emergency amid rise in cases of ritual killings across the country.

The lawmakers also urged the National Orientation Agency (NOA), stakeholders, and the media to initiate a campaign towards changing the situation in the country.

This followed the adoption of a motion of urgent public importance by Toby Okechukwu, the deputy minority leader, at the plenary in Abuja, NAN reported.

Presenting the motion, Mr Okechukwu said that incidents of ritual killings had assumed an alarming rate in Nigeria while decrying the upsurge of reported ritual killings, and abductions in different parts of the country.

He blamed the increase on Nollywood, the country’s movie industry, arguing that younger generations may see ritual killing as a norm.

“Ritual killing had become a predominant theme in most homemade movies which if not checked, our younger generation may begin to view it as an acceptable norm,” he said.

Mr Okechukwu added that in most cases, the culprits also rape, maim, kill and cut out sensitive body parts of unsuspecting victims for rituals.

Citing the killing of Iniobong Umoren in Akwa Ibom and the recent incident of 21-year-old Sofiat Kehinde who was killed and had her head burnt in a local pot in Abeokuta, Ogun, the lawmaker said the news triggered condemnation considering the age of the suspected killers.

The House thereafter charged the Inspector General of Police to take urgent steps towards tacking ritual killings in the country.

The lawmakers also tasked the Executive Director, National Film and Video Censors Board to rise to the mandate of the agency as the clearing house for all movies produced in the country.

Source: Lawmakers blame Nigerian movies for surge in ritual killings, declare national emergency

More:

Reps ask Buhari to declare national emergency over ritual killings

Published: February 9, 2022
By: Ochogwu Sunday – Daily Post, Nigeria

The House of Representatives on Wednesday called on the Federal Government to declare a national emergency on ritual killings across the country.

The development followed the adoption of a motion of urgent public importance by Toby Okechukwu, the Deputy Minority Leader, at the plenary on Wednesday in Abuja.

Presenting the motion, Okechukwu said incidents of ritual killings had assumed an alarming rate in Nigeria while decrying the upsurge of reported ritual killings with increasing cases of abductions and missing persons in different parts of the country.

He added that in most cases, the culprits also rape, maim, kill and cut out sensitive body parts of unsuspecting victims for rituals.

He said the Red Cross Society in 2017 said it received 10,480 reports of missing persons in Nigeria.

“On January 22, three teenage suspects and a 21-year-old reportedly killed one Sofiat Kehinde, severed her head and burnt it in a local pot in Abeokuta, Ogun.

”The police command in Ogun on Feb. 7, reported that one of the suspects confessed that he learned the act of ritual killing from a video he watched on Facebook,” he stated.

He said the death of Sofiat attracted national outrage and condemnation considering the age of the suspected killers.

The lawmaker said merchants of such wicked acts often use social media as a tool to advertise their evil acts.

He also mentioned the grievous killing of Iniobong Umoren, a young woman in her 20s, who was lured to a particular location in Uyo, Akwa Ibom for a job interview, as widely reported in the national dailies.

He also cited the gruesome killings and heinous activities of Badoo Boys in Lagos State, which was also reported in the national dailies.

“Ritual killing had become a predominant theme in most homemade movies which if not checked, our younger generation may begin to view it as an acceptable norm,” he said.

The House thereafter declared a national emergency on ritual killings and urged the National Orientation Agency (NOA), stakeholders and the media to initiate a campaign towards changing the situation in the country.

The House tasked the Executive Director, National Film and Video Censors Board to rise to the mandate of the agency as the clearinghouse for all movies produced in the country.

DAILY POST reports that ritual killing has recently become a trend across the country as videos clips of such activities involving adults and even teenagers continue to emerge online.

Source: Reps ask Buhari to declare national emergency over ritual killings

More:

Declare emergency on ritual killings, Reps tell FG

Published: February 10, 2022
By: Ndubuisi Orji, Abuja – The Sun, Nigeria

House of Representatives, yesterday, called on the Inspector General of Police (IGP), Usman Baba Aikali, to step up intelligence, with a view to arrest and prosecute ritual killers across the country.

The House, which also called on the government to declare a national emergency on ritual killings, urged the National Orientation Agency, parents, heads of schools, religious leaders and the media to undertake a campaign against the menace.

Similarly, the Green Chamber charged the National Film and Video Censors Board to rise to its mandate as the clearing house for all movies produced in the country.

This followed the adoption of a motion by the Deputy Minority Leader, Toby Okechukwu, on the “need to curb the rising trend of ritual killings in the country.”

Okechukwu, while leading debate on the motion, said ritual killings have assumed an alarming rate in recent times. He said there have been an upsurge of reported cases of ritual killings with increasing cases of abductions and missing persons in different parts of the country.

According to him, in most cases, the culprits rape, maim, kill and obtain sensitive body parts of unsuspecting victims for rituals.

“The Red Cross Society in 2017 reported that it received 10,480 reports of missing persons in Nigeria. On January 22, 2022, three teenage suspects and a 20-year-old reportedly killed one Sofiat Kehinde, severed her head and burnt the head in a local pot in Abeokuta, Ogun State.

“Ogun State Police Command on Monday, February 7, reported that one of the suspects confessed he learned the act of ritual killing from a video he watched on Facebook. 

“Sofiat’s death has attracted national outrage and condemnation considering the ages of her killers,” he said.

He said it is worrisome that while youths in other climes are embracing science and technology, Nigerian youths “seem stuck in the mistaken belief that sacrificing human blood is the surest route to wealth, safety and protection.”

Okechukwu expressed dismay that ritual killings have “become a predominant theme in most home made movies,” and warned that if it is not checked, the younger generation may begin to see it as an acceptable norm.

He said a lot needs to be done by the police, other law enforcement agencies, as well as parents, religious institutions and schools to check the ugly development.

Source: Declare emergency on ritual killings, Reps tell FG

More:

Reps declare national emergency on ritual killings in Nigeria

Published: February 9, 2022
By: Bakare Majeeb – Premium Times, Nigeria

The House noted that while citizens of other countries are embracing science and technology, Nigerian youths are turning to ritual killings.

The House of Representatives has resolved to declare a national emergency on ritual killings in Nigeria.

It asked the National Orientation Agency (NOA), stakeholders and the media to initiate a campaign towards changing the situation in the country.

It also asked the Inspector-General of Police, Usman Alkali, to take urgent steps towards tackling ritual killings in the country.

This followed a motion by the Deputy Minority Leader of the House of Representatives, Toby Okechukwu (Enugu, PDP), who raised alarm over the surge in ritual related killings across the country.

Mr Okechukwu, in the motion of urgent public importance he moved on Wednesday, blamed Nigerian movies, popularly known as Nollywood, for the rising cases of ritual killings.

According to Mr Okechuckwu, while citizens of other countries are embracing science and technology, Nigerian youths are turning to ritual killings.

“While youths in other climes are embracing science and technology as a way of maintaining pace with our dynamic world, some of our youths seem stuck in the mistaken belief that sacrificing human blood is the surest route to wealth, safety and protection,” he said

Mr Okechukwu added that “ritual killing has become a predominant theme in most homemade movies which if not checked, our younger generation may begin to view it as an acceptable norm.

The killing of Sofia Kehinde 

He drew the attention of the House to the gruesome killing of me Sofiat Kehinde in Ogun State by some three teenagers in January for ritual related act sparked conversation on ritual.

Mr Okechukwu also condemned the use of social media “as a ready tool to advertise their evil behaviours.”

He also accused fake clerics, imams, herbalists and native doctors of being involved in promoting the get-rich-quick syndrome.

Following the presentation of the motion, the House resolved to declare a national emergency on ritual killings in Nigeria and called on National Orientation Agency, parents, heads of schools, religious leaders and the media to undertake a campaign to change the negative narrative that is bedevilling the society.

Also, it called on the Executive Director, National Film and Video Censors Board to rise to the mandate of the agency as the clearing house for all movies produced in the country.

It, therefore, mandated the House Committee on Information, National Orientation, Ethics and Values to ensure the agency complies with the directive and report back to the House within four weeks.

Furthermore, the House called on the Inspector-General of Police, Usman Akali, to take urgent steps to increase surveillance and intelligence gathering with a view to apprehending and prosecuting all perpetrators of ritual killings in Nigeria.

It asked the House Committee on Police Affairs to ensure the compliance of the force and report back to the House within four weeks.

Source: Reps declare national emergency on ritual killings in Nigeria

More:

Reps blame Nigerian movies for surge in ritual killings; call for national emergency

House of Representatives, [PHOTO CREDIT: Official Twitter handle of Reps NGR]

Published: February 9, 2022
By: News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) – Peoples Gazette

The Nigerian lower legislative chamber attributed the increase in ritual killings to home videos depicting the gruesome acts in their productions.

The House of Representatives on Wednesday declared a national emergency following the rise in cases of ritual killings across Nigeria.

It also urged the National Orientation Agency (NOA), stakeholders, and the media to initiate a campaign towards changing the situation in the country.

This followed the adoption of a motion of urgent public importance by Toby Okechukwu, the deputy minority leader, at the plenary in Abuja.

Presenting the motion, Mr Okechukwu said that incidents of ritual killings had assumed an alarming rate in Nigeria while decrying the upsurge of reported ritual killings, and abductions in different parts of the country.

He also attributed the increase in ritual killings to home videos in Nigeria, arguing that younger generations may see ritual killing as a norm.

“Ritual killing had become a predominant theme in most homemade movies which if not checked, our younger generation may begin to view it as an acceptable norm,” he said.

Mr Okechukwu added that in most cases, the culprits also rape, maim, kill and cut out sensitive body parts of unsuspecting victims for rituals.

Citing the killing of Iniobong Umoren in Akwa Ibom and the recent incident of 21-year-old Sofiat Kehinde who was killed and had her head burnt in a local pot in Abeokuta, Ogun, the lawmaker said the news triggered condemnation considering the age of the suspected killers.

The House thereafter charged the Inspector General of Police to take urgent steps towards tacking ritual killings in the country.

The lower chamber also tasked the Executive Director, National Film and Video Censors Board to rise to the mandate of the agency as the clearing house for all movies produced in the country.

(NAN)

Source: Reps blame Nigerian movies for surge in ritual killings; call for national emergency

More: 

JUST IN: Reps declare national emergency over ritual killings

Published: February 9, 2022
By: Tony Akowa, Abuja – The Nation newspaper, Nigeria

Femi Gbajabiamila

Source: JUST IN: Reps declare national emergency over ritual killings

More: 

Reps call for state of emergency on ritual killings

Published: February 9, 2022
By: James Kwen – Business Day, Nigeria

Source: Reps call for state of emergency on ritual killings

More:

Ritual killing: National Assembly tell Nigeria goment to declare emergency on trend

Published: February 9, 2022
By: BBC

Source: Ritual killing: National Assembly tell Nigeria goment to declare emergency on trend

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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

Osun State, Nigeria: Civil society group raises alarm over surge in ritual killings, calls on government to act

Warning: the following graphic details of heinous crimes may upset the reader.

Osun State is with an area of less than 10,000 km2 one of the smallest of the 36 Nigerian states and with an estimated population of 4-5 million people the state has one of the highest population densities in the country, Africa’s most populated country. The history and cultural diversity and richness of the people in Osun State are phenomenal and well-known. It’s also interesting to know that Osun State has a literacy rate of about 80%, one of the highest literacy rates in the country.  

Unfortunately, and seemingly in contradiction with the educational level of the people in general, the state is also notoriously known for its ritual murders which are locally called ‘money rituals’. In the past I have posted a large number of reported ritual murder cases, too many to mention here.

Interested readers may use the drop-down menu (under ‘African countries’ on the home page) and then use the search option for ‘Osun State’ if interested in more information on the subject.

A civil society group called Every Life Matters recently stood up raising alarm over the increasing numbers of ritual murders in the state, calling on the authorities to act and end this frightening trend. The founder of the organisation, Mrs. Babalola Atinuke, and her associates are to be commended for their action. Hopefully their action will be successful in curbing the incidence of ritual killings in this part of the country with the long-term goal of ending these practices which have no place in the 21st century. 

The article presented below summarizes a number of recent ritual murder cases, only the tip of an iceberg as we know, their gruesome details may shock certain readers.
(FVDK)

Civil society group raises alarm over surge in ritual killings

Source: 

Published: January 21, 2022
By: Kazeem Badmus – Osun Defender, Nigeria

A State of Osun based civil society group, Every Life Matters (ELM), has raised the alarm over increasing rate of ritual killings in the state, calling on the government, security agencies and all other state actors to work together to curb the menace.

The founder of the organisation, Mrs. Babalola Atinuke, while speaking with OSUN DEFENDERon Tuesday, said cases of killing for ritual purposes are dishearteningly on the rise in Osun, a situation she said calls for drastic action from stakeholders.

Atinuke attributed ritual killings to the inordinate desire of youth of nowadays and few older people to get quick and easy money without working. 

According to Atinkue, if drastic step is not taken to curb the situation, the state might become unsafe for the good citizens and residents. 

She said: “The spate of killing for ritual purposes is gradually assuming an alarming rate in the state of Osun and if not quickly checked, it can make the state unsafe for the good people.

“Children and some people are no longer safe to go out at night and I want to urge the government, security agencies and all other state actors to rise up and work together to clamp down on those perpetrating this act.

“The cases, when read or heard of, are disheartening, weepy, pathetic and calls for a sober reflection. As an organisation, we are trying our best by orientating our people, most especially the youth, on the need to thread carefully on their quest for money.”

Ritual Killings On The Rise In Osun

OSUN DEFENDER takes a look at some cases of alleged ritual killings in the state in the past few months.

On January 5, 2022, a native doctor, Ganiyu Wasiu, living in Igege town, Ola-Oluwa local government, was caught with mutilated human body parts.

The suspect, according to the Osun State Security Network, codenamed Amotekun, was arrested while conveying the mutilated human parts in a ‘Ghana-Must-Go’ bag.

On December 14, 2021, an Islamic cleric, Lukman Salawudeen (36), was arrested by policemen in the state in connection with the murder of a lady, Bolaji Akerele. 

The cleric attested to the fact that he prepared ritual soap for his customer, even as he denied kown how his client got the human part he used to prepare the ritual soap.

The State Commissioner of Police, Mr. Olawale Olokode while briefing Newsmen, said: “The police discovered a dead body identified as Bolaji Akerele dumped somewhere in Ile-Ife.

“Upon investigation, it was discovered that her head and palms have been severed from the body. One Sunday Olajide was arrested in connection with the murder

“The arrest of the first suspect on December 6, 2021, led to the arrest of three other suspects in Iwo, Osun state by a police tactical team. They all confessed to having strangulated the woman to death with the motives of using her for money rituals”.

On August 9, 2021, an Ikirun based Ogboni cult member, Ifadare Afolabi, and his friend,  Ifaseun Afolabi, a herbalist, were arrested for allegedly conspiring to kill a 35-year-old man, Ayoade Fasesin, and use his body parts for ritual purposes.

Speaking to newsmen when he was paraded by the police, Ifadare said he used his victim’s head and legs for a charm to draw clients to his temple in Ikirun.

He, however, lamented that the charm did not work, as his temple did not see an influx of people as expected.

Also, a lady, Toyin Adewale, was sometimes in June, last year brutally murdered by her boyfriend for ritual purpose after having sex with her. 

The boyfriend, Akin, according to his accomplice Kabiru, invited the deceased from Ibadan to Apomu, in the State of Osun, with the sole aim of using her head and heart for money ritual. 

Narrating how they killed the lady, Kabiru said the victim was brought from Ibadan by his friend Akin, to his residence at Agunla Junction in Apomu, where he had sexual intercourse with her.

“Akin brought the deceased to my house at Agunla Junction Apomu. The lady is not from our area. She probably came from Ibadan. She was Akin’s girlfriend. Akin is an herbalist and my friend. After sleeping with the lady, I entered the room and he had already strangulated her. I only helped him to hold the lady’s leg.

“Akin told me he wanted to do a money ritual and needed some organs for the ritual. He promised that whatever I needed would be given to me, if I helped him.  I didn’t kill the woman, Akin did. I gave him a knife that he used to dismember the body and we packed it inside a box in my room.”

Source: Group Raises Alarm Over Surge In Ritual Killings

Nigeria: a woman in Ondo State escapes from her abductors, other kidnapped ladies fall victim to a ritual killing network

Warning: the story below contains graphic details which may upset the reader.

A 24-year-old lady from Warri, Delta State, has escaped from a den of ritual killers after being lured with a fake lucrative job offer abroad. After spending nine months in the bush where her abductors impregnated her she managed to escape. Other women who also had been kidnapped were not so lucky. After being raped, some women died of hunger and diseases, some were ritually murdered by their abductors who also used their babies for ritualistic purposes.

The article makes no mention of any arrest. Abductions are rife in Nigeria, both for purposes of demanding a ransom and for ritualistic purposes. According to the article, citing the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, an estimated 750,000 to one million persons are trafficked annually in Nigeria. Some 75% of those trafficked are taken across the states, 23% within states while 2% are moved outside the country, mostly to places in Europe and in Asia. Un unknown number of them is killed for ritual purposes in Nigeria (‘money rituals’).
(webmaster FVDK). 

Nigerian Woman Lured With Fake Italian Job Ends Up In Ritualists’ Den In Ondo, Impregnated By Abductors

Published: November 30, 2021
By: Sahara Reporters, New York

Mercy was made to believe that the salary was good and that they could pay for the travel expenses when they reached Italy and had started earning.

A 24-year-old lady simply identified as Mercy, who is based in Warri, Delta State, has escaped from a den of ritual killers after being lured with a fake lucrative job offer in Italy.

SaharaReporters learnt that the victim, who lost her father as a baby and was abandoned by her mother at 11 months, was told by a friend that there was a woman in Lagos State ready to sponsor them to Italy to work as sales attendants in stores and stewards for rich clients.

Mercy was made to believe that the salary was good and that they could pay for the travel expenses when they reached Italy and had started earning.

Desperate for a new life away from Warri where she endured an abusive relationship that produced a son, the 24-year-old lady did not inform her guardian, Maureen, before leaving for Lagos State in October 2020 with her friend, who was also lured and tricked to believe the trip was real.

Their journey to Italy was to start immediately after they arrived in Lagos and met with the sponsor of their trip.

But things took a different turn when Mercy and her friend, who is now deceased, finally linked up with team members of the woman that was to take them to Europe in a house around Surulere, a Lagos suburb.

“Mercy and her friend were given laced juice to drink when they arrived at the place they were to meet with the person, who promised to take them to Italy. They became unconscious for hours and only realised that they were in danger when they found themselves in a forest.

“Mercy summoned the courage to ask the men who had guns to take them out of the place but they beat her so much that she fainted,” Eriyo told SaharaReporters on Tuesday.

The days that followed that period were hellish for Mercy and the other ladies, who found themselves in the forest and at the receiving end of the cruelty dished out by the gun-wielding men.

Apart from being subjected to several hours of rape daily, the victims of the abduction and ritual killing network were made to endure hunger for several days.

They were only given two slices of bread once in three days and made to drink from a dirty pond inside the forest.

Mercy and many of the victims fell sick at various times while in captivity with some of them dying in the process.

“Many of the young ladies lured by this syndicate died of hunger and diseases from the dirty water they drank while in the forest.

“Their body parts were sold to ritualists who constantly demanded such. A lady who got pregnant and delivered there died but the baby survived. The gang used the innocent child for rituals along with the mother’s body.

“The place was a forest of death where no victim ever came out alive. The area was fortified and watched by members of this syndicate who all had sophisticated guns with them,” Eriyo added.

After spending around nine months inside this den, Mercy, her late friend and two others summoned the courage to escape from the place despite the presence of the gun-wielding men in various sections of the forest.

One day, after those guarding the place, were excessively high on drugs and alcohol and had dozed off, a handful of the victims escaped from the place. 

They walked for three days inside the forest before getting to an expressway where a truck driver transporting food items to Lagos reluctantly carried them in his vehicle to the city.

The friend, who introduced the Italy trip to Mercy, did not make it out of the forest – she died while they were escaping from the place.

“Mercy is still in shock over everything she went through inside that forest. She returned to Warri last Thursday and gave birth by Caesarean section on Sunday.

“She was impregnated by her captors, who took turns to rape her and other ladies in the bush. Others like her who got pregnant in that forest and delivered there had their babies collected from them for ritual purposes.

“The trauma and pain are still fresh for her because many times she screams from her sleep, afraid that those people in the forest would come back to take her. The situation is affecting her mentally.

“She needs a lot of help to overcome the pain. I am trying my best to support her in ways I can but she needs great help.

“She is still in the hospital after giving birth by CS. Her health is of great concern to us because she has high blood pressure at the moment. She needs urgent assistance and intervention in various forms,” Eriyo said.

Trafficking in persons in Nigeria has been a major issue for years with the government failing to tackle the situation to a halt despite public outcry.

While in the past ladies were mostly taken to Italy, Spain and other European countries for prostitution, these days such persons after being lured by the syndicate in this illicit business, end up as sex slaves in Asian countries or killed for ritual purposes in Nigeria.

According to the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, an estimated 750,000 to one million persons are trafficked annually in Nigeria.

The organisation went on to say that over 75 per cent of those trafficked are taken across the states, 23 per cent within states while two per cent are moved outside the country.

Source: Nigerian Woman Lured With Fake Italian Job Ends Up In Ritualists’ Den In Ondo, Impregnated By Abductors

Liberia: opposition leader Alexander Cummings comments on mysterious deaths, unsolved gruesome murders and reports of ritualistic killings

Introduction
In previous posts I highlighted the articles published by two leading Liberian newspapers, Frontpage Africa and the Daily Observer. Also The New Dawn, another well-known Liberian newspaper, has been paying attention to the increasing unrest and insecurity in the country which resulted from the unexplained deaths, disappearances and murders. In the first of three articles presented below, one of Liberia’s main opposition politicians, the leader of the Alternative National Congress (ANC), Alexander Cummings, criticizes the Weah Administration for the lack of security in the country and its lack of action. The author of the second article wonders whether there exists a death squad in the country, given the series of unexplained deaths. The third and final article reports on an alleged murder attempt for ritualistic purposes as well as the discovery of a dead body in the streets of Monrovia causing panic and fear among the residents of the area.   

Warning: some readers may find the following articles disturbing because of their graphic contents (webmaster FVDK).

Reports of rising wave of murders worry Cummings

Published: November 10, 2021
By: The New Dawn, Liberia

The Standard-bearer of the Alternative National Congress (ANC), Alexander B. Cummings says his heart is broken by the rising wave of murders and other acts of lawlessness overtaking the Liberian society.

At least three high profile individuals who have been discovered murdered in their homes in recent times-two are the sons of two former Presidents, Tubman and Tolbert.

Last week the Ministry of Justice ordered post mortem examinations on the remains of John Tubman, Maude Elliot, and William R. Tolbert, III – who were all discovered dead in their homes – as part of a full-scale investigation.

In a podcast over the weekend, why extending his deepest condolences to all the bereaved families, Cummings was irritated that under the George Weah administration, the Liberian Government has continued to fail the nation. Below is his full text.

Cummings: “Under this President, the Liberian Government continues to fail the nation.  The security situation in the country is worsening daily. Communities are unsafe, streets are unsafe, and homes are unsafe. One does not require any statistics to know Monrovia, the nation’s Capital, is overcome by fear and rising crimes. And yet, the President’s response was to disdainfully tell Liberians to buy and install close circuit televisions (CCTV) in their homes.

As families are grieving the many mysterious deaths, unsolved gruesome murders and reports of ritualistic killings that are laying siege to the society, an uncaring President Weah is vacationing at his Jamaica Resort irresponsibly disconnected from the daily living and entrapping fears of Liberians. The President is offering no real solutions to the rising wave of crimes and murders, and some of the government’s explanations around the mysterious deaths and murders have left more questions than they have sought to answer.

Protecting lives is the most basic duty of any responsible government. The Liberian President is the constitutional Head of State and Head of Government. As such, this basic duty begins and ends with President George Weah and he has failed at it.

No government can prevent the commission of all crimes. But no government must be repeatedly unresponsive as this Liberian Government to the rising wave of crimes overtaking the society. Also, no President ought to be vacationing while Liberians are being murdered, including in their homes. No President ought to be partying while murderous crimes are sweeping communities leaving Liberians to live in terror and fear.

Every Liberian life is precious. Therefore, I urge all Liberians to be careful. Move about in pairs. Look out for each other in the communities. Check on each other. Setup and enable community watch teams where it does not already exist and help each other when you sense someone is in distress. We can no longer depend on the failed government. Therefore, we must look to depend on each other for mutual security.

Liberia deserves better.

Source: Reports of rising wave of murders worry Cummings

Related:

Liberia: Signs of an emerging death squad

The deceased, Rev. William Tolbert, III

Published: November 4, 2021
By: The New Dawn, Liberia

Liberia: The wave of suspicious killings in Monrovia and parts adjacent is both scary and very disappointing, particularly under a civilian administration where security or law and order should be paramount. However, it seems that ghastly killings in homes every other week or month have become common in our society with the authority at the highest level remaining conspicuously silent.

Our attention is drawn to the suspicious death of three high-profile personalities, two of them, officials of government and a highly established private citizen in just over a month.

On Tuesday, November 2, 2021, the Government of Liberia announced the death of Liberia’s Peace Ambassador Rev. William R. Tolbert, III, youngest son of slain President Dr. William R. Tolbert, Jr. According to the Ministry of Information, Rev. Tolbert was discovered dead at his residence in Monrovia on Sunday, October 31, in what the Liberia National Police described as a suspected homicide. The same day, female officer Maude Elliott of the Liberia Immigration Service (LIS) said to be in her 50s, was found brutally murdered at home in Brewerville, outside Monrovia.

Earlier, in September this year, specifically September 22, 76-year-old John Hilary Tubman, a son of another former President, William V.S. Tubman, was reportedly found dead lying face down in a pool of blood with deep cuts to his neck and forehead with a pillow placed over his head at his residence in Fiamah community, Monrovia.

Interestingly, these personalities were alone in their respective homes when they were brutally killed. These are nothing else, but targeted murders that raise a concern about something sinister being perpetrated, and Police investigations should be able to establish.

There were other mysterious deaths in and around the city prior to these three specific cases listed above. And from the trend of events, we can deduce that there is a pattern being unleashed by a probable death squad that is roaming and seeking its next target.

The killings bear similar wounds that were inflicted in specific parts of the body, indicating there is a hired killer or a group of hired killers involved. Who are they working for is yet to be established but their targets may signal something.

Are we returning to the days of the Charles Julu death squad under slain President Samuel Kanyon Doe? God forbid! But the writings on the wall spell bad omen for our beloved country.

Sadly however, Civil Society, religious leaders and institutions including men and women of moral conscience in our society are silent about the unfolding development. Today, the late John Hilary Tubman, Officer Maude Elliott and Rev. William R. Tolbert, III, are the latest victims of this creeping evil in our country. We don’t who’s next.

Society should speak out now before it becomes too late. It is citizens’ alienable right guaranteed by our Constitution to peacefully assemble, protest and petition their representatives against anything that threatens their peace and happiness. If the current killings must stop, Liberians should rise up now!

Source: Liberia: Signs of an emerging death squad

Related:

Fear in Monrovia

Published: September 14, 2021
By: Lincoln G. Peters – The New Dawn, Liberia

Fear has gripped residents in Monrovia after a woman was discovered dead on 17th Street, Sinkor, a suburb of the Liberian capital early Tuesday morning, 14 September 2021, days after another lady claimed to have survived an attempt by her kidnappers to slaughter her for ritualistic purposes.

Residents of the 17th Street, Sinkor community woke up to the horrible news of the discovery of an unidentified woman on the beachside of the community.

Some residents who gathered at the scene have told reporters that the lady was unknown in the community, saying they have never been in the area prior to her death.

They narrated that the deceased appeared to have been sexually harassed and killed in another community by the alleged perpetrators before bringing her corpse to Sinkor and dumping it on the beachside. There were bruises on the lady’s lifeless body and blood was pouring out of it as well.

But James Pewe, a resident of the community, believed that the lack of police patrol in the area was responsible for the lady’s death.

He also said residents of the community are not standing up to take action in helping to protect the community.

Blama Kenneh, a businessman in the area said the young lady’s corpse was the second to have been discovered after a young mad person was also discovered in the nearby vicinity in recent months.

However the spokesman of the Liberia National Police (LNP), Moses Carter said the lady found dead was mentally ill.

The police spokesman told reporters that the deceased was sexually tempered with, and quoted family sources as saying that the lady left her home last week prior to the incident. He noted that police are investigating circumstances leading to her death.

Items found on the scene  belonging to the lady included an empty bag, long sticks, and other lady materials.

Source: Fear in Monrovia

Liberia – another ritualistic murder: missing young woman found dead, body parts extracted

Warning: the following contains graphic details of a ritualistic murder including a photo of the victim (webmaster FVDK).

Last week, the mutilated body of a young woman was discovered in central Liberia. The gruesome discovery took place in Gbarnga, capital of Bong County. The victim, 21-year old Annie Wamah, had been beheaded, vital body parts had been removed by presumably ritualistic murderers.

Liberia has been in the grip of a series of mysterious deaths, rituals murders and rumors alleging a wave of ritualistic killings in the country. As indicated in the article below, in recent months, reported cases of ritual killings have surged in the country. A rising number of mutilated bodies on the streets in the capital Monrovia and other parts of the country this year has sown fear all over the country.

I have reported more than once on this situation, still recently, see my postings earlier this month: on October 9, October 7, October 5, October 4, October 1, and September 30. The Liberian police has denied that ritualistic murders are being committed in this West African country which is notorious for its ritual killings, notably in connection with elections and other major political developments. However, the police confirmed one ritual murder which had taken place in Maryland County, in the southeastern part of the country. But reports of more ritual killings are persistent and several high placed people have condemned these criminal acts which have no place in a modern society.

The inevitable question arises: who is behind the apparent current wave of ritualistic murders? Who is responsible for the ritual killing of Annie Wamah whose dead body was found in Ghankay Farm (a common name in the area and presumably referring to Charles ‘Ghankay’ Taylor’s farm belonging to the warlord-turned-president who’s presently serving a 50-year sentence in a high security prison in the UK). The victim’s throat was slit and her tongue, lips and genitals had been removed, presumably for ‘juju’ purposes. Are ambitious politicians behind the crime or unscrupulous businessmen or -women, or other people who believe that this superstitious act works out positively for them?

Not only do we want to know the truth, the culprits must also be arrested, tried, in a fair trial, and – when found guilty – given the sentence which they deserve. Too many ritualistic murderers in Liberia go unpunished. Impunity is a bitter reality in Liberia. Unfortunately, only too many Liberians can confirm its existence in Africa’s oldest republic (webmaster FVDK).

Liberia: Missing Woman, 21, Found Dead, Body Parts Extracted in Gbarnga

Published: October 15, 2021
By: Selma Lomax – FrontPage Africa, Liberia

GBARNGA, Bong County – Police in Gbarnga on Thursday confirmed the gruesome killing of a 21-year-old girl by persons suspected to be ritualists in the central city of Gbarnga, Bong County.

The police described the incident as “unfortunate and mysterious”. The police said investigation had begun into the case and that the Crimes Services Division (CID) had been directed to take over the case.

Concerned residents had earlier told FrontPageAfrica that the victim, Annie Wamah, was not only killed, she was beheaded and vital organs were removed by suspected rituals.

Also confirming the reports, the deceased’s uncle, Moses Harmon, said his neice, a resident of Buteh Sue community in Gbarnga, electoral District Three, had earlier gone missing on Monday, October 11 around 10:00 am when she arrived in Gbarnga from her parents’ farm in Wainsue Town.

Harmon said he first raised the alarm and organised a search party, but efforts to find her proved abortive until 8:00 p.m. when her corpse was found in Ghankay Farm with her throat slit and other vital organs removed.

“On that fateful day I got a call that my niece was missing and I raised the alarm and asked community members to help the family search for her,” he said.

“The matter was immediately reported at the Police station, but it was not long that information came that her body had been located at Ghankay Farm.

“She was slaughtered like a goat and the corpse dumped in bush,’’ he said. “When the police came and saw the body, they saw that the tongue, the lips, and the genitals were cut off,” Harmon said. “The family filed a complaint but I know it will go nowhere.”

Harmon appealed to police to unravel the sudden death of his neice.

In recent months, reported cases of ritual killings have surged in Liberia. A rising number of mutilated bodies on streets in Monrovia and other parts of the country this year has sown fear in Liberians.

Recently, the lifeless body of a girl believed to be in her 30s was discovered in Caldwell with body parts extracted.Till date perpetrators of the dastardly act are yet to be found.

A day earlier, another lifeless body of a man believed to be in his 40s was found in the Soul Clinic community. As at the time his body was recovered, some parts had been removed. They included his penis, eyes and tongue. Still, perpetrators have not been arrested.

Liberians have taken to social media to raise alarm about the rise in ritual activities, urging commuters to always write down the identification markings of public conveyance vehicles as they enter and make phone calls to loved ones to pass on the information. 

Amid the scourge in suspected ritualistic activities in the country,  Police Inspector General, Patrick Sudue and his deputy Prince Mulbah, say such reports are untrue and being fueled by opposition politicians to tarnish the image of the government.

Sudue and Mulbah, appearing on the national radio few weeks ago, disclosed that the police are only aware of a single ritualistic incident, which occurred in MaryLand County, adding the perpetrators are facing justice.

“People are being paid to tarnish the image of the country and to raise false national security alert. There are inconsistencies in their statements,” Sudue says.

Meanwhile, Mulbah, Deputy Police Inspector General for Administration, described information about ritualistic killings in the country as a ploy designed by the opposition to create fear for diaspora Liberians who want to return home.

“As far our investigations are concerned, we haven’t established anything called ritualistic killing apart from what happened in Maryland County,” Mulbah says.

“We have heard a lot of people talking on social media of people being kidnapped and taken away, these are paid agents.”  

Sudue said most of these social media pictorials and videos about ritualistic incidents are not a representation of what is unfolding in the country.

He warned those involved in orchestrating a negative image about the country to desist, or face the full weight of the law.

However, the country’s Vice President, Jewel Howard-Taylor called on those in authority of the security to take actions that would end the many mysterious deaths that are linked to ritualistic killings.

The vice president said Liberians are feeling more insecure than ever due to the rise in suspected ritualistic activities in the country. 

“I’d like to call upon our security sector to please put in place a regime that will enable our people to remain safe. The situation involves instances where women’s private parts are being cut off, stories of young people being taken in specific location where others allegedly were being used for ritualistic purposes are very alarming,” Howard-Taylor said.

Source: Liberia: Missing Woman, 21, Found Dead, Body Parts Extracted in Gbarnga

Ritual murders and mysterious deaths in Liberia – cont’d

Yesterday’s post on the alleged recent surge in ritual murders in Liberia and the spike in mysterious deaths is continued today with a cry from a Liberian journalist and pro-child advocate, Fahnie S. Kollie. The author cries for an intervention, be it from local, Liberian authorities, or the international community, to stop the seemingly endless killing of innocent civilians, men, women, children, for ritualistic purposes.  

Read her story and plea for help. And – to use Fahnie Kollie’s words:  Let’s act together. Either now or never!

Another Liberian who has raised his voice against the silence of President Weah over the wave of ritualistic killings across Monrovia and other parts of the country is Dr. Daniel Cassell. 

Dr. Daniel Cassell is the Vision Bearer of the newly certificated People’s Liberation Party (PLP), and also the Chief Executive Officer (CEO)/President of the Dr. Cassell’s Humanitarian Foundation, and Kwenyan Security Firm, operating in Liberia.

I wish to congratulate Fahnie Kollie and Daniel Cassell here for their statements and public intervention. Whereas I commend them, notably for their plea for respect of human rights and their cry for an end to these senseless murders, it is nonetheless important to note that some allegations of ritualistic activities have not been proven even though – it cannot be said enough – every ritualistic murder is one too much.
Liberia, unfortunately, has a long history and notorious record when it comes to ritual killings, mysterious deaths, witchcraft and superstition. Previous posts bear ample testimony to this observation.

Warning: some readers may find the graphic details of the description cited disturbing (webmaster FVDK).

Liberia: A Horror Movie – How Did We Get Here?

Fahnie S. Kollie, Liberian journalist and pro-life advocate

Published: September 29, 2021
By: Fahnie S. Kollie – The Perspective, Atlanta/Georgia 

Liberia has been known to be a peaceful and calm country since the end of the civil war in August 2003. In fact, it is often referred to as a Sweet Land of Liberty. But is this maxim or aphorism still true today? 

Mysterious deaths and ritualistic killings were visible during President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf’s administration. But why has it drastically increased during this administration? Why now and what’s going on? After the ascendency of ex-Soccer Legend George M. Weah in 2018, Liberians were promised and reassured of a better and safer Liberia; A Liberia where women and children would feel protected and secured; One where the press would be free and citizens would not be haunted because of their individual stance on issues or political affiliation.

A Liberia where the rule of law would be respected and justice would be equally discharged/dispensed to all regardless of status, religion, ethnicity, and background. One that puts the security, safety, and wellbeing of the citizens above all other national priorities. 

We weren’t promised a Liberia of terror, horror, and fear as it is being seen today. President Weah’s inaugural speech 4 years ago gave many Liberians renewed hope and assurance of a new Liberia, but are we experiencing that new Liberia? Just few months into Mr. Weah’s Presidency, things began to go the opposite. A big corruption scandal broke out; the infamous alleged missing 16 billion LRD. 

After the release of a damning report surrounding this saga which established that over 2 billion LRD was unaccounted for, two Liberian professionals who were declared persons of interest in the investigation mysteriously died. Mr. Matthew J. Innis who was the Deputy Director for Micro-Finance in the Regulation and Supervision Department at the Central Bank of Liberia (CBL) died in an alleged hit-and-run in March 2019. 

According to FrontPage Africa, another employee identified as Mr. Kollie Ballah, a general support staff at the CBL, who was believed to be the one that drove one of the trucks with the LD 16 billion from the Freeport, also died in an accident. What seemed like a week’s thing would soon turn into a never ending nightmare for Liberians. 

This was the start of another terrifying episode of mysterious deaths, continued disappearances, and ritualistic killings under the leadership of the newly-elected President, George M. Weah. A year later on October 2, 2020, Mrs. Gifty Lama, Acting Manager of Tax Services at the LRA and Mr. Albert Peters, Assistant Commissioner for Internal Audit at LRA were found dead in a vehicle on Broad Street in Monrovia. Two days later, another auditor of the LRA, Mr. George Fahnboto reportedly died in a vehicle accident along the 72nd Boulevard according to FPA. Still dealing with the mysterious deaths of these three auditors, on October 10, the Head of the Internal Audit Agency (IAA), Emmanuel Barten Nyeswa, was also found dead in his compound along the 72nd boulevard. 

The death of the four (4) auditors with in a period of two weeks sparked huge fear among Liberians who found themselves in the auditing field and every other sector. People could no longer feel safe to be in the streets at night. An autopsy was conducted and the results were released in November. This created mixed reaction among Liberians including family members of the deceased. At first, the mysterious deaths were just circulating among Liberian professionals especially those in government, but soon, this fearful tragedy extended to every Liberian in the country. A wave of mysterious disappearances and ritualistic killings took center stage in the country. 

Shockingly, three boys who were hired by the Proprietor of the St. Moses Funeral Parlor went missing on October 17. Robert M. Blamo, Jr., Bobby S. Gbeanquoi, and Siafa G. Boimah reportedly drowned in a river in Bong County while returning home in canoe which allegedly capsized. Mr. Moses Ahossoushe was accused by some family members of the missing boys of being involved in ritualistic killings but he denied the claim. This incident led to series of protests organized by family members and other concerned Liberians. Up till now, this matter has not been fully resolved. 

After a devastating 2020, Liberians expected a boost of security in 2021 to ensure that these mysterious incidences are minimized. Unfortunately, the situation got worse. On March 2, 2021, FPA reported that the body of a woman who was gruesomely murdered was discovered in the 72nd community in Paynesville. According to the police spokesman, Moses Carter, the police was investigating the mysterious death of a 46-year-old woman identified as Florence Massaquoi. Prior to this, the lifeless body of a man believed to be in his 30s was also discovered in the Outland community near the Benson hospital.

Investigation into these cases were still ongoing when another case involving a 22-year-old boy identified as Mordecial Nyemah was reported. He was found in a rubber bush in Plebo Sodoken District with body parts extracted. These numerous cases of mysterious killings have rapidly increased over the past few months and it is alarming.

Just this month of September 2021, there have been several cases of kidnapping and killing of women and men with parts extracted from their bodies. An employee of the LRA reportedly went missing and is yet to be found. On Tuesday, September 14, 2021, the lifeless body of a woman was discovered on a beach on 17th street, Sinkor. The latest incident to occur was involving a woman believed to be in her early 40s. She was discovered dead and half-naked with bruises all over her body in Caldwell on Monday, September 27, 2021. All of these mysterious happenings coupled with the testimonies from some women, who were survivors of kidnapping/abduction for ritual purposes and the startling revelation made by former manager of the Liberia Airport Authority (LAA), have instilled fear in every citizen especially women. Madam Ellen Corkrum accused the Solicitor General of Liberia, Syrenius Cephus and others of being involved in the killing of young virgins for ritualistic purposes, but he denied the allegation.

With everything that is going on which I consider a “Horror Movie”, the fundamental question is “how did we get here”? How did Liberia get to this point? Liberians are no longer safe in their own country. Women and girls can no longer walk around freely without worrying about someone putting a white handkerchief to their nose or drugging their drink. We no longer feel safe riding a vehicle, a motorcycle, or a tricycle. 

Borrowing the lyrics from the famous “Liar man” song sang by President Weah, “why are we being tracked down in our own country?” what did Liberians do to deserve this kind of terror and harassment? As though the massive corruption, bad economy, poor educational and healthcare system, appalling living conditions of the people, and the high level of sexual and gender-based violence perpetrated against women are not enough, Liberians are made to suffer painful and gruesome killings due to heartlessness and greed by evil people, some of whom have been entrusted with state power. 

Instead of providing security for the people as duty-bearers, they are using the very power to kill people and go with impunity. The situation confronting Liberians is more like the common saying “adding insult to injury or ma die, pa crazy”. It can be recalled that Pres. Weah, speaking during the signing of the book of condolence for the former IAA boss informed Liberians to be their own security thus urging government officials and ordinary citizens to buy and install CCTV camera in their various homes for security protection. 

But my question to the president is, did IAA boss not have CCTV camera at his house? He did but did it provide him security protection? No, it didn’t. Did Pres. Weah do a background check before making such statement? I don’t think so. How many Liberians can afford to install CCTV camera in their homes and even if some can afford, does Liberia have stable and accessible electricity to run the CCTV cameras? No. 

Didn’t the president consider residents of Brewerville, Bensonville, Fendall, Careyburg, Johnsonville and Liberians in rural areas who don’t have electricity at all? I don’t think he did. How do you expect an old lady or an oldman in Butuo, Salayea, Belle Yala, Pleebo and other villages to operate CCTV cameras? 

The situation in the country is horrible and unacceptable. Liberians don’t deserve this kind of terror and wickedness. In the 21 century, when other third world countries are keen on improving their country, coming up with new ideas and inventions, our country is still dealing with the issue of ritualistic killing. Are we serious? This madness must stop. President Weah and the entire joint security force need to take siege of this matter and put it under control once and for all. 

Mr. President, you promised to uphold and defend the Constitution of this Republic and that Constitution guarantees every Liberian the right to life and security; therefore, you must ensure that you uphold and defend those rights. I don’t think this is the kind of Liberia you want. If that’s the case, than you must act now against ritualistic killing. The disappearances and killings must stop. Everyone has the right to Life, Liberty and Security of Person. The universal declaration of human rights guarantees that. So, no one has the right to deprive others of living. Mr. President, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Chief Justice, Hon. Daniel Ziakan, Hon. Prince C. Johnson, Col. Patrick Sudue, Cllr. Musa Dean and every other person in the government, we are calling on you to act now and ensure our sisters, mothers, brothers, fathers, and children are protected. 

To our partners, the US Embassy, EU, ECOWAS, OAU, Civil society Organizations, and others, we are also calling on you to intervene in this matter. We must go beyond issuing statements and press releases. Let’s act together. Either now or never!

About The Author: Fahnie S. Kollie is a pro-child and pro-girl advocate. She is a senior student at the University of Liberia studying mass communication and an Honor Scholar of Lux-In-Tenebris Scholars Program. Fahnie is also a graduating senior of the Peter Quaqua School Of Journalism and a practicing journalist.  Fahnie can be reached via: fskthescholar@gmail.com or 0775069741/0555589644

Source: Liberia: A Horror Movie – How Did We Get Here?

More on the recent surge in ritualistic killings and the inaction of government:

Dr. Cassell frowns at Weah’s silence on ritualistic killings

Dr. Daniel E. Cassell is the Vision Bearer of the People’s Liberation Party (PLP).
He is also the President of the Dr. Cassell’s Humanitarian Foundation and CEO of the Kwenyan Security Firm, operating in Liberia.

Published: September 30, 2021
By: Staff Editor – Daily Observer, Liberia 

The Vision Bearer of the newly certificated People’s Liberation Party (PLP), Dr. Daniel E. Cassell, has expressed disappointment over the conspicuous silence of President George Manneh Weah over the growing wave of ritualistic killings across Monrovia and other parts of the country.

Liberians and other foreign residents in the country continue to wake up to news of the gruesome murder of citizens, especially women, in a communities around Montserrado County.

Parts are extracted from the remains of the victims by the unknown perpetrators, allegedly for ritualistic purposes. The body of a woman, only identified as Oretha, was discovered covered with banana leaves on a dusty road in Caldwell early this week. A day later, another corpse was found in a bush in the Soul Clinic community. Last week, the body of Mr. John Hilary Tubman, son of the late President William V.S. Tubman, was found in a pool of blood, badly beaten to death in his bedroom at his home in Fiamah, a suburb of Monrovia.

The current situation has instilled fear in Liberians and foreign residents, compelling them to return home from their various working and selling places earlier than before.  Citizens are now observing a self-imposed curfew in the country to avoid encountering predators.

In a press statement issued in Monrovia on Wednesday, September 29, Dr. Cassell condemned the callous wave of ritualistic killings across the country by those he called “evil-minded individuals.”

He emphasized that besides the escalating media reports on the shameless murdering of fellow citizens for ritualistic purposes, he has also witnessed videos of individuals recounting horrifying stories of how they narrowly escaped death at the hands of these “predatory, ritualistic carnivores.”

“I have also heard a lady identified as Ellen Cockrum made striking revelations of ritualistic killings on various radio stations — linking top brass of the George Weah administration to ritualistic practices,” Dr. Cassell said.

Dr. Cassell maintained that despite the current situation in the country, nothing significant has been heard from the Liberian Chief Executive and other government officials to allay the fears that have gripped citizens and others.

“In the face of these impending tragic developments, I have not heard President Weah or his government officials say or do anything significant about this wave of carnage, to curb the crippling fear being instilled in the public.”

“It is disgusting and disgraceful that a government would stumble on its constitutional obligation to protect its citizens and supinely watch evil-minded men slaughter them in cold blood,” Dr. Cassell added.

Dr. Cassell further called on the government to take the appropriate steps in arresting the situation.

He said state security forces should “Aggressively hunt down these barbaric killers and bring them to justice.”

“I extend condolences to the bereaved families of all who have been murdered by these carnivores. If this scene of horror hasn’t claimed the attention of President George Weah and his government, I hope this statement draws their attention and causes them to expeditiously end the slaughtering of our people for ritualistic purposes”.

Meanwhile, Dr. Cassell has cautioned Liberians to be mindful while in the streets and commuting across Monrovia and other parts of the country. He, however, prayed for God’s grace and protection upon Liberia and its citizens in the wake of numerous challenges and the growing wave of secret and ritualistic killings that have engulfed the post-conflict nation in recent times.

Source: Dr. Cassell Frowns at Weah’s Silence On Ritualistic Killings

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

Southern Africa: shocking details of ‘muti’ murders

Warning: the following article contains graphic details, the reader may find the article shocking.

The following article from Eric Naki, the Political Eitor of The Citizen, a South African online news magazine, contains several frank observations which are worth specifically mentioning here.

First, Naki, citing an expert on ritual murders, Dr Alunamutwe Rannditsheni, from Limpopo province, tells us that ritual murders are a worldwide phenomenon, occurring not only in Africa or Sub-Saharan Africa. I am very happy with this expert-observation even though it results in mixed feelings because of its sad contents. I have also mentioned it in my introduction to this website on ritual killing, witchcraft and superstition in African countries (‘Why publish this site‘).

Secondly, reportedly, kidnappings, human trafficking, and ritual murders, often referred to as ‘muti murders’, are well-known crimes in nearly all 16 member-states of the Southern Africa Development Community (SADC).  This is shocking. The combined population living in the 16 SADC-countries totals about 300 million people.

Lastly, the well-informed author confirms the ghastly details of the way muti murders are committed. Organs or other body parts are extracted live from the poor and helpless victims, not seldom children. The reality is sometimes too hard to describe and too revolting to imagine.

Ritual murders, human trafficking, kidnappings, and associated fear and torture are a plague in many African countries and must stop immediately. To the governments which have a sacred obligation to protect their citizens I would say: ‘If you’re not part of the solution, you’re part of the problem.’ (webmaster FVDK).

Muti murders: ‘Genitals only work if cut from live victims’

Published: May 20, 2021
By: The Citizen, South Africa – Eric Naki

Victims were lured with promises of jobs, but when they arrived at the destination, they would be abducted and taken away to have their body parts cut off.

An expert on ritual murders, Dr Alunamutwe Rannditsheni, from Limpopo, said ritual killings were a worldwide phenomenon and not only an African problem.

Almost all of the SADC countries experienced ritual killing-related kidnappings and human trafficking.

A 2008 investigation by the Human Rights League in Mozambique found such murders were rife in the country. It found people were trafficked between countries with the purpose to remove parts to be trafficked separately.

The league, which interviewed survivors, eye-witnesses, families of victims and civil society in Mozambique and South Africa, found body parts were forcibly removed from children and adults, causing death or severe disability.

“Throughout the report, informants share personal experiences, which confirm that body parts are taken across the border between South Africa and Mozambique.”

A custom’s official in Sofala province, Mozambique, said: “They say the treatments with genital organs only work if they are taken from a person alive.”

In some instances in Mozambique, victims were beheaded before the parts were removed.

“The murderer cut her throat like she was a goat. He cut her head just like that and removed her genital organs, leaving all the rest,” the report quoted a police officer at Cabo Delgado Province, Mozambique as saying.

In another case, a female stall holder at Ressano Garcia on the border with South Africa was fingered for ritual murders.

“The police searched and found that she was carrying genital organs of adult men … I don’t know how many exactly, it was several. But they were from adult men, I saw them myself,” an officer said.

Cases of muti killings were also reported in Zimbabwe, Botswana, Mozambique, Swaziland, Lesotho, Malawi and Tanzania. People living with albinism were the main targets in Tanzania.

Community leader and businessman Phumudzo Mukhwati alleged the ritual murder gangs had spread to provinces such as KwaZulu-Natal, Mpumalanga, North West and Gauteng.

Victims were lured with promises of jobs, but when they arrived at the destination, they would be abducted and taken away to have their body parts cut off in Limpopo or a neighbouring country.

Source: Muti murders: ‘Genitals only work if cut from live victims’

The Southern African Development Community (SADC) comprises 16 Member States: Angola, Botswana, Comoros, Democratic Republic of Congo, Eswatini, Lesotho, Madagascar, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Seychelles, South Africa, Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe.