On Wednesday, January 11, the people of Arondizuogu in Imo State, In Nigeria’s delta region, took to the streets to protest over a number of unexplained killings in their communities. The killings were described as ‘strange happenings’ and linked to politics. One does not need much imagination to associate these killings with ritualistic murders.
Imo State is located in the country’s south-east, is the third smallest in area of Nigeria’s 36 states and has a population of about 6 – 7 million people. It is not the first time the people in Imo State are confronted with deadly ritualistic activities in their communities. In 2009, a large group of women from Ndiakunwata and Arondizuogu, Ideato North, a Local Government Area of Imo State, stormed the state capital Owerri to stage a peaceful protest over a wave of ritual killings in their area. See the second article presented below for more details.
The third article below describes another horrible ritual murder which occurred in 2009. The mentioning of Otokoto in the 2009 article refers to the 1996 Otokoto riots which happened in the aftermath of another ritual murder in Imo State in that year (of an 11-year-old schoolboy boy, Anthony Ikechukwu Okoronkwo, though the uprising was also caused by the rampant corruption in the state).
Readers are warned that the described murder cases contain graphic details.
Finally, for shortness sake I refer to my previous postings for more ritual murder cases in Imo State. To access these postings, click on ‘African countries’ in the dropdown menu and select: Nigeria (webmaster FVDK).
Villagers protest ritual killings, burning of vehicles in Imo State
Published: January 11, 2023
By: Chinonso Alozie – Vanguard, Nigeria
Elderly men, women and Youths of Arondizugo, Ideato North Local Government Area of Imo state, on Wednesday continued to protest over the alleged killings and burning of vehicles by suspected hoodlums in their communities.
The youths were seen on a video that went viral on social media, they marched around the Ideato North communities demanding no further delay for government to intervene in their situation.
At the time of filing this report, some of the villagers who could not give reasons for the attacks described some of the killings as “strange happenings” and linked to politics.
The latest was the alleged killing of a young man and a tricycle rider whose names were withheld. It happened Tuesday night at Ndiejezie Izuogu in Ideato’s local government area of Imo State.
They lamented the burning of about three vehicles one of the vehicle’s plate numbers was given as a YAB-225DY Range rover vehicle.
One of the villagers who preferred not to mention his name said: “My brother these killings have been happening for some time. We have cried for help nothing is happening. Even sometime last year, our royal fathers from Arondizugo came out and protested. I saw you were among the journalists that they addressed and pleaded for government intervention because this is too much.
“We want the government to come and save us. We don’t need much delay again. We are in pain now. We want an end to these killings and burning of vehicles.
“Many of roads are not safe now. this is bad we want help. let us end this killings. We are tired. Why the killings? why these troubles. We want government to end it.”
However, at the time of filing this report, the elders in the various villages were still having strategic meetings to see how to end the reported killings and burning of vehicles.
When the Imo state Police Public Relations Officer, PPRO, Micheal Abattam, was contacted he was yet to respond.
Women protest ritual killings in Imo State
Published: November 12, 2009
By: Chidi Nkwopara – Vanguard, Nigeria
OWERRI – Scores of women from Ndiakunwata, Arondizuogu, Ideato North Local Government Area of Imo State, stormed Owerri to stage a peaceful protest over recent ritual killings in their area.
Vanguard gathered that unidentified ritualists killed an octogenarian, Mrs. Beatrice Asoanya, and her granddaughter, Miss Chinaza Okereke, while they were sleeping in their home.
The women displayed placards with varying inscriptions, which included “Our lives are in serious danger”, “We are no longer safe in our community”, “We need government’s intervention” and “Ohakim save us”.
Speaking to newsmen amidst sobs, Lady Patricia Okereke, the mother of the slain Chinaza, said the suspected ritualists cut off the breast of her mother, Mrs. Asoanya, and drained her blood.
Lady Okereke said the women were angered that the suspected killer of the two citizens have been released, adding that the released suspects had since been moved to Abuja by his masters.
Okereke wondered why her daughter and mother would be murdered in such a gruesome manner, while the alleged culprits were left off the hook because of alleged influence of those backing him.
I demand that the perpetrators be brought to face the full weight of the law with a view to serving as a deterrence to others, she pleaded.
Otokoto again in Imo! Girl, 18, beheaded for rituals
Published: November 5, 2009 (headlines: August 19, 2009)
By: Chidi Nkwopara – Nairaland, Nigeria
Residents of Owerri were Wednesday morning treated to a morbid spectacle as the police command paraded four suspects and the decomposing head of an 18-year old Chinwe Doris Perpetua Obieri, who was murdered for ritual purposes.
The bizarre scene, which was a replica of the infamous Otokoto saga of September 1996, had the prime suspect, 24-year old Emeka Uwakwe, from Ndiakunwata, Arondizuogu, Ideato North local government area of the state, clutching the decapitated head of his girl friend, Chinwe.
Speaking to newsmen, the Commissioner of Police, Mr. Aloy Okorie, gave the names of the other suspects as Chigamezu Anyaoha from Orodo, Mbaitoli local council area, Anthony Obioha from Lude, Ahiazu Mbaise local government area, and the medicine man, Damian Joseph from Obot Akara, Akwa Ibom State.
Mr. Okorie gave a graphic account of how the sordid crime was committed and the efforts made by the state police command to apprehend the suspects in far away Lagos State.
“You can see we have a case of murder for ritual murder. What happened was that on Sunday, July 26, 2009, the young lady whose head you are seeing (pointing at the decapitated head of Chinwe) left her Akokwa home, Ideato North local government area of Imo State. You can see the head without the body.
Late Chinwe before her death
“The young man, Emeka Uwakwe, is the boy friend of this girl and he came all the way from Lagos and lured her to his house in the village. He murdered the girl, cut off her head for ritual purpose and dumped the headless body in a bush. Apparently, the girl had told her parents that she was going to visit her maternal uncle in another village.
“As at 7.04pm on that same Sunday, she called her parents and informed them she was already in her maternal uncle’s compound and they believed her. Later, her parents made a call to her and the call was not pulling through up till the next morning and by Monday when it was obvious that she was not coming back, they made a report to the police that their daughter was missing.
“The names of the parents are Mr. Nicholas and Mrs. Theresa Obieri from Umuezeala, Umueziama Kindred in Akokwa. It was after they made the report to the police that some vigilante people on the same date, came around and said they saw a headless body in the bush. The police invited the girl’s parents and they identified the headless body to be that of their daughter.
“It was at that point that the police swung into action and started making investigations. From information, we got to know that she had a boy friend who is resident in Lagos and who was seen around home within that period. So, we went to Lagos and we were able to arrest Emeka Uwakwe. You can see him now with the head of the slain girl (pointing at Emeka).
“When we now got him, he made a confession that Mr. Damian Joseph of Obot Akara in Akwa Ibom State, though he is based in Lagos also, was the one who made the charm with which, if he got the head of this girl, mix it with the charm and bury it, money will start flowing, he will start plucking money as if he was plucking fruits from the tree. That was exactly what the man did. He (Emeka) got the concoction, mixed it with the head and buried it in his room.
“We also went for the Native Doctor and got him. Meanwhile, Emeka made a confession too that it was his friends, Chigaemezu Anyaoha and Anthony Obioha, that introduced him to the Native Doctor and that he was capable of making medicine for money. They also confirmed that they had done such a medicine before with human scrotum. We do not know whether it their own scrotum or other people’s scrotum. We will surely find out in due.
“You can see the pretty 18-year old girl (displaying her photograph). I am sure if you had seen this girl when she was alive, you will weep. You will certainly weep because I have never seen a thing like that in my life. I just imagine my own daughter of that age being slaughtered for ritual purposes.
“Well, in an era where we talking about people going to live in the moon, that is the age we are in, 21st century, and people are still being fooled that they can use human head to make money. It is very unfortunate.
“Emeka Uwakwe was arrested on Wednesday last week (August 12, 2009) and when he gave us the information on how he got about the whole show, our men left for Lagos on Sunday and we were able to arrest both the Native Doctor and the other two boys. The next line of action is that they will pay the price prescribed by the laws of the land. We all know the price for somebody who has committed murder. He will pay with his own life. There is no duplicate for life. If he had the courage to kill somebody, he should also be prepared to face the consequence. He should be in a position to say if he killed her with a knife or first strangulated her before he cut off the neck.
“It is very clear that the girl deceived her parents. My advice is simple. I have a daughter of that age. I know how we monitor her. Most times, especially in this era, if she has to go out, we must let go with somebody because you never can tell. That age is a critical period in the training of children. Parents should monitor their daughters closely. It is easy to make contacts in this GSM era. I am sure that if the parents had raised alarm that very night they did not see her, may be things would have come out differently.