Nigeria: Addressing the escalating ritual killings challenge

Everyday I see new reports of ritual killings in Nigeria – locally called ‘money rituals’ – and although I haven’t stopped presenting these articles here, on this site, I have been forced to limit reporting on these barbaric and cruel crimes due to their overwhelming number. Unfortunately, there are many more African countries where ambitious, unscrupulous and criminal people commit the same repulsive crimes and governments fail to act effectively, as is the case in Nigeria.

Nevertheless the foregoing, I wish to draw the readers’ attention to the article below, a Nigerian plea to address the escalating wave of ritual killings terrorizing Africa’s most populated country, divided in 36 states.

Let the article speak for itself. The reader may find useful background reading in my February 13 2022 posting whereas I also wish to remind the reader that on February 9 of this year, the House of Representatives asked the Federal Government to declare state of emergency on ritual killings, signaling the urgency and spread of the problem.
(webmaster FVDK)

Addressing the escalating ritual killings challenge

Published: July 25, 2022
By: Business hallmark – Hallmark News

From all available indications, the killing of humans in Nigeria for ritual purposes is escalating. And it has to be severely addressed.

In some of the more confounding instances, the alleged perpetrators are most shockingly, young people.

An obvious trigger for the disreputable behaviour from many accounts is the parlous economic state of the nation. With inflation, unemployment and the exchange rate posting very dismal statistics, millions of Nigerians are at their wits end as to how to make ends meet. And some are being lulled into the false trap of ritual killings.

Compounding the extant challenges that the average Nigerian is faced with today are the atrocious governance failings countrywide, the unbridled rate of urbanisation and the collapse of both the traditional community structure and family values.

Some others would add factors like the parlous state of public education and very importantly, the untoward practices of several disreputable traditional and religious leaders who hardly inspire a better orientation for the embattled and impressionable in the society at a moment like this.

Indeed, given the reported close synergy between ritual killing practices and traditional and spiritual related observances and leaders, this is one critical area where the searchlight must be beamed as we seek a resolution of the menace. Traditional and spiritual leaders must be put on the spot.

This is more so when the entire ritual industry complex is predicated on traditional and religious factors. Within this framework, the thinking is that when the traditional ‘medicine man’ administers an appropriate mix of fitting incantations and sacrifices, the end result is that a mystical power transfer of sorts can then be effected in which the human sacrifice is then accepted by the superintending spiritual forces who then sign off on the efficacy and acceptability of the sacrifice and thereafter dispense the requested security, material or other similarly incredulous favours to the beneficiaries.

Alarmed by the rising incidence of the nefarious practice, the Federal House of Representatives had in February this year tasked the executive ‘to declare a state of emergency on the rising incidence.’ This was via a motion that was sponsored by its Deputy Minority Leader Toby Okechukwu.

In the same breath, the lawmakers requested Inspector General of Police, Usman Alkali Baba, to “take urgent steps to increase surveillance and intelligence gathering with a view to apprehending and prosecuting all perpetrators of ritual killings in Nigeria.” 

And establishing a cultural nexus to the challenge, the lawmakers equally urged that the National Orientation Agency (NOA) “initiate a campaign towards changing the situation in the country.”

Five months after these resolutions were seemingly passed and carried, there is no let in the rate of incidence as regards the killing for rituals challenge.

Underscoring the depth of the challenge is the fact that pontificating political actors are not innocent of the practice. Indeed, some are minded to believe that they are indeed the prime enablers of the gory ring of shame.

Now and again, the airwaves are littered with news reports and revelations linking political players with acts of ritual. Whether in the Okija shrine incidents earlier in the current democratic disposition where a then serving governor openly confessed to having been taken to a shrine to swear an oath of allegiance to a godfather; or in the Otokoto saga that wracked the Imo State capital, Owerri; or even the Baddoo incidents in Ikorodu, Lagos State, political players have been implicated now and again.

Beyond the immediate precincts of politics is the fact that many of our supposed elite role models also get to be fingered from time to time as being somewhat involved in the ring. At the moment for example, a very notable and high profile tertiary education complex proprietor is being tried on account of the mysterious death of a lodger in his hotel premises.

With clearly both the high and mighty being implicated in the challenge and with many members of the public increasingly being led to believe that you really cannot make good progress in today’s Nigeria without getting involved with shady and nefarious underground groups that are associated with ritual killings and related vices, it is really a herculean task addressing the cankerworm.

An expanded part of the challenge is even more deeply historical. We refer to a time in the distant past when different communities were engaged in acts of war and where, it is believed that the prevalent spiritual environment back then tended to accommodate human ritual killings under certain communally defined conditions. While in the modern social environment this has since been formally outlawed, very clearly some rogue practitioners continue to find ways around its outlawing.

This situation has also not been helped by the continued prevalence of traditional and modernist cult groups that many a time have been widely believed to be associated with ritual killings. While one or more of such groups now and again comes out to the public domain to swear their non-involvement with ritual killings, the deeper fact remains that the tar on the entire sub-set remains. And then you have the yahoo yahoo plus segment of the irascible internet fraud ring.

In the view of the newspaper, what is needed is a firm will to act, to enforce the laws and vigorously drive a campaign to wean our people off the accursed path of ritual killing. And while we are at it, can our leaders all commit to simply going back to the basics and doing very simple things to raise the governance bar? Half of the crisis would be addressed in that way.

Teens arrested in Abeokuta, Ogun State over murder of a teenager girl
Click here for more postings on ritual murders in Ogun State

Source: Addressing the escalating ritual killings challenge

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Ifatunde’s identity unveiled

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Yet another

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Items bought by Ifatunde for the money-making ritual

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Human lives and sanctity violated

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

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

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

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

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

Distressing statistics

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

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

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

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

Hotbeds for ritual killings

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

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

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

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

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

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

Money-making charms strange

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

All money rituals have dire consequences

The traditionalist warned that money rituals have rebounding consequences.

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

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

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

A country’s weak fight against money ritual

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

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

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

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

Five ritual cases reported in six months —Police

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

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

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

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

How ritual killers operate —Amotekun

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

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

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

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

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

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

Slow justice system

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

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

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

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

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

Oyo State upholds prosecution –Oyo AG

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

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

Our members not ritualists —OPC reacts

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

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

Psychologist harps on empowerment

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

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

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

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

Seven recent ritualistic murders that shocked Nigerians

Unfortunately, the list of proven and suspected ritual killing cases in Nigeria is – so-to-speak – endless. Ritualistic murders and related activities are know in Nigeria and neighboring (anglophone) countries, such as Ghana, as ‘money rituals’. Everyday, new murders are being discovered and/or reported. I’ve mentioned it earlier on this site: it is not possible to report here or to give comments on every single ‘money ritual’ in Nigeria, Africa’s most populated countries with an estimated population of about 200 million people.

Some of the reported ritual murder cases exposed below have been included in previous posts, some are not. With the help of the ‘search’ button on this page one may easily find previous posts with (more) details of the respective murder cases.
(webmaster FVDK)

7 Ritual Killing Cases That Shocked Nigerians

Kehinde Oladimeji and his wife Adejumoke were arrested in Abeokuta, Ogun State,
for being in possession of fresh human parts. See below.

Published: April 23, 2022
By: KOKO TV Nigeria

The rise in the rate of people who have been killed for money ritual is alarming and everyone is crying out for this evil trend to come to an end.

Money ritual can be said to be the act of using ritual to get money, now the trick here is the ingredients used in doing the ritual are what makes this act a deadly and terrible option. Most people who indulge in this ritual always want what people call ‘fast money’ because they can’t wait for their time according to the plan of God. There have been several cases of youths caught with one human part or the other or in the process of killing someone whom they want to harvest the body part and use for money ritual. So here 7 ritual killing cases that shocked Nigerians.

Sofiat Kehinde
On the 4th of February, 2022, four Nigerian men were charged with the murder of a 20-year-old woman in a suspected ritual killing case. The men, who are aged between 18 to 20 years, were arrested on the last Saturday of January for allegedly killing Sofiat Kehinde and burning her head for money ritual purposes at Oke Aregba area of Abeokuta, Ogun State. According to reports, the deceased was dating one of the killers. She was lured by her boyfriend, Soliu, to his room where she was overpowered and killed.

READ ALSO: KOKO Docuseries: Get Something Doing, Don’t Stay Jobless – Herbalist Advises Youths Against Money Ritual

Jennifer Anthony
In the case of Jennifer Anthony; a 20-year-old Moses Oko was been apprehended by the police for allegedly killing her for ritual purposes. Jennifer, who was a student of the University of Jos, was found lifeless at a hotel in Jos, along Zaria Road, on New Year’s Day. Some of her body parts were also missing. Moses was arrested in Benue State after he fled from Jos for committing the crime.

Oluwabamise Ayanwola
The 22-year-old fashion designer, Bamise, was found dead in Lagos after boarding a BRT bus heading to Oshodi from Chevron bus stop, Lekki. She was said to have been raped before being killed. Her corpse was later found on the Carter Bridge. The police have since arrested Andrew Nice Omininikoron, the driver of the BRT bus, who is the prime suspect. It was reported that young Bamise was raped, and had parts of her body removed which confirmed the suspicion that she may have been killed for ritual purposes. The bereaved family has demanded justice for her.

Timothy Odeniyi
On February 1st, 2022, a suspected ritual killer, Timothy Odeniyi, was arrested by men of the Amotekun Corps in Ondo State, Nigeria. The 35-year-old man confessed to newsmen that he was promised N30m if he could produce and deliver human parts to Lagos. He revealed that the human parts were to be delivered to one of his bosses living in Lagos. Timothy confessed that he went to burial grounds to harvest the body parts from corpses buried claiming that he did not murder anyone.

READ ALSO: #JusticeForBamise: BRT Driver Accused Of Murder Arraigned In Court Today

Kehinde Oladimeji and Adejumoke
Nigerian couple Kehinde Oladimeji, 43, and his 35-year-old wife, Adejumoke, were paraded before newsmen at the police command headquarters, Eleweran, Abeokuta. The suspects were arrested in Abeokuta for being in possession of fresh human parts. The couple, who resided on 72, MKO Abiola Way, Leme, Abeokuta, in the Abeokuta South Local Government Area of Ogun State, were arrested with human hands and breasts. It was reported that they killed and severed the body of a lady who was Adejumoke’s friend and sold the head to a merchant, identified as Omo Baale, a resident of Ibadan, Oyo State.

Timothy Adegoke
Timothy Adegoke checked into a hotel in Ile-Ife to write his Post Graduate examinations but he never came out alive as he was murdered overnight and buried some metres away from the hotel. The proprietor of the hotel, Mr Adedoyin is currently standing trial. A lot of people reported contrary to what the police said that some of his body parts were missing and had been used for money ritual.

Afeez Olalere
Another case is that of 32-year-old Afeez Olalere, who is a suspected internet fraudster. Afeez confessed to killing his younger brother for money ritual purposes. He was arrested during a stop and search operation along Itamaga, Ikorodu road in Lagos State by operatives of the Lagos State Police Command. Afeez confessed during interrogation that his mother encouraged him to kill his younger brother after a herbalist she took him to had told him to sacrifice one life which must be his sibling. He had planned with his mother to poison his 21-year-old brother to death. They harvested the required body parts and took his remains to the mortuary.

Source: 7 Ritual Killing Cases That Shocked Nigerians

Cult killings create chaos in Nigeria

The following figures are frightening. Watch out: I don’t want to be misunderstood. Not all of these killings were ritualistic murders, but many if not most of them were related to occult practices including ‘money rituals’.

Between April 2021 and April 2022, 281 people were killed in violent cult attacks across 20 states. Anambra state tops the list with 41 cult killings, followed by Benue state: 34, Lagos state: 29, Rivers state: 26, Delta state: 26, Cross River state: 23, Ogun state: 17,  Akwa Ibom state: 17, Osun state: 14, Bayelsa state:, 9 and Imo state 9. Notably, Anambra and Ogun states, in recent months, became notorious for cult killings.

In recent weeks, Ogun state became the epicentre of cultism and ritual killings. Between 2019 and 2022, at least 64 people were killed in various violent clashes among cult groups in Ogun state.

Nigeria is at a dangerous crossroads. Persistent state fragility increasingly leads to jungle justice. Poverty and poor perspectives provide powerful motives for the army of jobless young boys and girls to seek a better life in cult groups. The authority of the state is at stake (webmaster FVDK).

Halt rising tide of cult attacks, wars

Published: April 15, 2022
By: Editorial – Daily Trust, Nigeria

While some states in North West and North Central Nigeria contend with banditry and kidnapping, more than a dozen states in the southern part of the country suffer from cult killings. Between April 2021 and April 2022, 281 people were killed in fierce cult attacks across 20 states. The states include Anambra which tops the chart with 41 cult killings, Benue 34, Lagos 29, Rivers 26, Delta 26, Cross River 23, Ogun 17,  Akwa Ibom 17, Osun 14, Bayelsa, 9 and Imo 9. Anambra and Ogun states, in recent months, became notorious for cult killings.

In February this year, at least 20 people were killed when suspected cultists invaded a burial in Ebenebe, Awka North Local Government Area of Anambra State. They also desecrated the corpse of a suspected member, identified as Ozo, which had been prepared for burial. In recent weeks, Ogun became the epicentre of cultism and ritual killings. Between 2019 and 2022, no fewer than 64 people were killed in various violent clashes among cult groups in Ogun State.

In the latest onslaught, 16 persons were killed in Abeokuta including a kingpin identified as Tommy, who was hacked down at Panseke in a renewed cult war. Tommy ruled streets of Oluwo, Onikolobo, Adigbe and Panseke areas of Abeokuta. Tommy’s assailants tracked him to the chaotic Pankese area at night, stabbed him in the head and left him to die in the pool of his blood.

Responding to the clashes between the Eiye and Aiye cult groups in Ogun State that lasted for over a week, President Muhammadu Buhari, in a statement issued by his Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Malam Garba Shehu, directed the police and other law enforcement agencies to confront groups seeking to destroy peace.

Governor of Ogun State Adedapo Abiodun had, in January this year, re-launched the state joint security outfit, code-named OP-MESA, where he threatened to make Ogun inhabitable for all criminals. In February 2022, Abiodun signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with his Oyo State counterpart, Seyi Makinde, in Abeokuta, where he declared that criminals were after his life because he was “making life unbearable for them”.

Cultism suggests nothing but evil. It involves the coming together of a group with  deviant  beliefs and practices that are not only exclusively kept away from the knowledge of others but such activities are carried out at odd hours of the day. Some plausible causes of cultism include peer group influence, parental background, drug and substance addiction, societal decadence, poor education standards, loneliness and the lack of recreational facilities.

In Nigerian tertiary institutions, for instance, Black Axe, Buccaneers, Vikings, Aro Mates, Supreme Eiye, Black Eye, Black Beret, Black Bra, Daughters of Jezebel are common names of cult groups. Their common features of identity include initiation through the use of blood or inscription of marks on the bodies of new members; oath-taking; and the use of specific colour as group symbol. It is in the character of cult members to engage in armed robbery, sexual assault, drug abuse, examination malpractice, harassment and bullying of students, and intimidating lecturers for grades.

Cultism has continued to survive partly because of the patronage from the society including politicians who use cultists either as hit men during elections or for assassinating political opponents. While some become cultists in their search for protection, others join cult groups to avenge an assault or a painful past. Some students become cultists out of the desire to become “Big Boys” and superior to their peers.

To halt the rising tide of cultism, parents must give more quality time and attention to their children’s moral development than they give to their businesses or office work. Good parenting requires bridging all communication gaps between parents and their children. To de-radicalise our youths, we call on the National Universities Commission (NUC) to make moral education a General Studies (GST) course for all students of tertiary institutions in the country.

As we recently reiterated on this page, only concrete security measures, not empty directives, would rescue the country from the security challenges confronting it. Government must demonstrate genuine political will to protect lives from cult attacks. The need to deploy modern technology in surveillance, intelligence and detective operations of security agencies cannot be more strategic than now when criminal elements have become more sophisticated.

If “an idle mind” as they say “is a devil’s workshop”, local governments in the country are advised to provide recreational and sports facilities that would keep the army of jobless young boys and girls in their localities busy. While we call on state governments to seasonally organise inter-schools or inter-LGAs sports competitions, we also urge them to support schools with basic sporting equipment. We encourage the NDLEA to sustain its ongoing offensive against drug peddling and abuse, just as we urge the National Orientation Agency (NOA) to, as part of its mandate; orientate the Nigerian public on the sacredness of human life.

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Source: Halt Rising Tide Of Cult Attacks, Wars

Nigeria: A harvest of ritual deaths

Recently, I posted on this site a large number of ritual murder cases in Nigeria. For this reason I wished to draw the readers’s attention to other African countries where similar crimes are being committed. However, these days Nigeria is making headlines which one cannot ignore. The number of ritual murders in Africa’s most populated country can no longer be counted – if that ever was the case. In my research and reporting on ‘money rituals’ in Nigeria – as ritualistic killings are commonly called in this West African country – I already experienced that I could hardly cope with the fast rising number of reported ritualistic murders committed by Yahoo boys, Yahoo Plus boys and whatever the names are that are given to these criminals who have no respect for a human life.

The below article by Hakim Jamiu is a cry to end these gruesome practices. She offers a grim insight in the recent spate in ritual murder cases in Nigeria, a devastating picture, and sketches a possible explanation for these practices which are based on superstition and fed by greed. I recognize a number of cases she mentions, some are notorious cases, whereas I am always unpleasantly surprised to learn about more ritual murder cases hitherto unknown. She does not have to dig deep to unveil ritual murder cases in nine states: Akwa Ibom, Ekiti, Kwara, Lagos, Plateau, Rivers, Ogun, Ondo, Osun. I can without much effort add nine more states. Also see my previous posts on Nigeria (click on the category African countries in the top bar and select Nigeria in the drop down menu thus appearing).

I have repeatedly mentioned on this site that Nigeria ranks Number One in ritual murder cases in Africa. The following article confirms this sad conclusion.
(FVDK)

Nigeria: a harvest of ritual deaths

Published: March 17, 2022
By: Hakim Jamiu – The Cable, Nigeria

Nigeria is fast gaining notoriety as a country of ritualists with stories of ritual killings daily reported in the traditional and social media. The latest of this cannibalistic atrocity is the gruesome murder of 22-year-old Oluwabamise Ayankole who was abducted after boarding a Lagos state government-owned Bus Rapid Transport (BRT) bus and was later murdered and had parts of her body removed which confirmed the suspicion that she may have been killed for ritual purposes. Bamise, who was on her way home from work, was thereafter tossed out of the BRT Bus at Ebute Ero. Bamise, according to eyewitnesses, was still alive after she was tossed out of the vehicle at the Ebute Ero bridge but she gave up the ghost because she did not get help on time. Social media was awash with her last chat and video expressing fears for her safety inside the desolate BRT bus in which she and another lady and three men were the only occupants. As if she knew, her instinct warned her of the danger ahead but she was helpless. Murder in a BRT bus which is expected to be one of the safest means of transportation owned by the government of Lagos state is a sacrilege.

Bamise’s gruesome murder is only an addition to the harvest of deaths by ritualists in the last few weeks across Nigeria. While many Nigerians are yet to grapple with the shock of the gruesome beheading of Sofiat Kehinde, a 17-year-old girl in Abeokuta by four ritualists between ages 18 and 20, the murder of Bamise sent shock waves to all as anybody’s child, relative or friend could be the next victim. Late last year in Ado Ekiti, a seven-year-old girl, Demilade was sent on an errand by her mother four houses away but the little girl disappeared immediately and all efforts to find her proved abortive until her corpse was found in a pastor’s house the following day! Timothy Adegoke checked into a hotel in Ile-Ife to write his postgraduate examinations but he never came out alive as he was murdered overnight and buried some metres away from the hotel. The proprietor of the hotel is currently standing trial!

In Ogun state, a woman connived with her husband to kill her visiting friend and dismembered her. The remains of the victim were later found in a bucket in the couple’s room. A ritual killer, Timothy Odeniyi who was arrested by Amotekun Corps in Ondo state confessed that he used to harvest human parts at burial grounds which he sells to his clients. In Jos, 20-year-old Moses Oko killed Jennifer, a student of the University of Jos and removed some of her body parts. In Ikorodu, Lagos state, a suspected internet fraudster (Yahoo+), 32-year-old Afeez Olalore killed his younger brother for ritual purposes. In Uyo, Akwa Ibom state, Uduak Akpan, a serial ritual killer killed 20-year-old Iniobong Umoren, a job seeker and buried her in a shallow grave. In Ilorin, Kwara state, a next-door neighbour allegedly murdered a groom-to-be for ritual purposes.

In 2019, Nigerians were alarmed about the arrest of one of Nigeria’s notorious ritual killers called Gracious David West in Port Harcourt who confessed to having killed at least 15 women for ritual purposes. In November 2019, one-year-old boy Eniola Kolawole was declared missing at Sotitobire Miracle Centre, Akure, Ondo state and has not been found till today. Irate youths set the church ablaze but the pastor who had been on trial has since been discharged and acquitted. One Shakirat was murdered in Iwo, Osun state and her body was dumped behind her mother’s shop with some of her parts missing!

It is an understatement to say that Satan has taken over our affairs completely as cases of ritual killings keep rising by the day! The question now is, are rituals for money-making real? Perhaps this is why the Nigerian-American media scholar, newspaper columnist and activist, Farooq Kperogi while bemoaning the unending spate of ritual murders in Nigeria argued, “the only solution lies in the liberation of Nigerians from stupid, backward, unproductive and murderous superstitions. The witch doctors who tell people to bring the body parts of murdered people to make them rich are often one of the most wretched people you can find on earth. If money rituals were real, they would be wealthy and won’t let anybody in on the secret”. Not many people agree with the view of Kperogi because if money-making rituals do not exist, why is ritual killing on the increase across the country? There have been many unverifiable variants and anecdotes concerning how money rituals work especially among yahoo boys which is called Yahoo plus. There is a type whereby ebora (a spirit) will bring the money to the yahoo boy after necessary sacrifices with human parts have been done. There is another type that will make the victim, usually, a foreigner obey whatever the yahoo boy says including sending millions of dollars on request. There is yet another type that involves using the pant of a woman. The pant, as they say, will fetch the ritualist a lot of money. It is not only yahoo boys that are into the ritual killing but they may have influenced others who are not into internet fraudsters to kill for rituals because of the belief that it is working for them. Some yahoo boys even go to the extent of eating human faeces, having spiritual baths in broad daylight at a public place, appearing only in pants in broad daylight to withdraw money from ATMs and so many bizarre and silly things!

The question remains, how much is ritual killing giving those involved in it that is worth the desperation of taking the life of a fellow human being? Definitely, it cannot give billions because many of the Yahoo plus boys even get broke after about three to six months while some go mad! So what’s the need for ritual killing? Apart from Yahoo boys, there are reports of a well-organised clientele of ritual killers which means that not all who are involved in ritual killing directly use the human parts but they are agents of some powerful personalities who buy the parts from them. There are reports that human parts markets exist in some areas of Lagos. It is also ridiculous that human life has been so reduced to nothingness that a human head is sold for as low as N20,000. Research also shows that many people who seek power and wealth like politicians and businessmen also use human parts for charms for good fortune and for fortification against real and perceived enemies! I wish to remind this group of politicians and businessmen that the greatest fortification and blessings come from God who is the custodian of power and fortune.

The underlying factor responsible for the present malaise is desperation on the part of our young ones who are eager to get rich quick. There is unprecedented moral bankruptcy and total collapse of family values of hard work, honesty and integrity. We should go beyond lamentations and take drastic actions. We must dig into the root cause of this barbaric act and approach it from there. What we are seeing are symptoms rather than cause. Our society has been sold to the dogs and many souls sold to the devil, the result is what is confronting us. A 17-year-old wanting to ride the latest automobile sold for millions of naira, not through any work but by any means. Society celebrating any rich person not minding the source of his or her wealth is responsible for the present madness. Images of boys displaying wealth on social media and messages that all that matter is money and the message is sinking fast and spreading like wildfire!

In one of the videos that circulated on the social media, a boy was asked if he could use her mother for rituals, he didn’t hesitate before saying yes as long as he will be rich! That’s what our society has turned to! We are breeding monsters and heartless beings who would not mind going to any length just to be rich! A child who would not blink an eyelid before killing his own mother for rituals would kill anybody without thinking about it! It is such a pity! It is common these days to find human head in a cellophane bag carried by a teenager sitting next to you in a bus! Human parts have become very common like animal parts ! It is such a shame that we have become a cannibalistic society! It is now normal to suspect the man or woman sitting next to you in a public place as a ritualist! It is that bad!

Beyond lamentations that have not helped, we must all resolve to end this monster that is threatening to consume all of us. Nobody is immune from ritual death. Bamise and other victims of ritual killings must not die in vain. Now that the driver of the BRT bus and his cohorts have been apprehended, their trial must be swift and transparent. Cameras must be installed in all BRT buses that would be monitored at a base station and on no account must this be switched off by any BRT driver.

The national and state houses of assembly should begin to work on laws to empower special courts to try ritual murder cases with stiffer penalties. Everybody must be vigilant and we must de-emphasise material wealth in our society while the source of wealth of emergency millionaires and new kids on the block must be questioned and such characters ostracized by the rest of the society as it was the practice on the days of yore when there was sanity.

We must say no to ritual killings! We are neither animals nor vampires! Even animals don’t kill themselves senselessly as we are witnessing presently!

Source: A harvest of ritual deaths

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

More: 

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

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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

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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

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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

More:

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Four ritual killing cases that shocked Nigerians in 2022

Ritual murder cases are so numerous in Nigeria that it seems impossible to report on each and every one of them. Last year and the years before showed many ritualistic murder cases – ‘money rituals ‘ – and the new year 2022 is not even six weeks old but already the country was shocked by a number of ‘money rituals’ which seems to justify the fear that 2022 will be a murderous year.  
(Webmaster FVDK)

Four Ritual Killing Cases That Shocked Nigerians In 2022

Published: February 9, 2022
By: Christine – Daily Trust, Nigeria

Cases of ritual killings in the country are fast increasing. Despite the fact that the year is new and in its second month, 2022 has already experienced the heartache and anguish that ritual killings are causing. Daily Trust highlights top ritual killings cases that have rocked the country in 2022.

Sofiat Kehinde

On the 4th of February, 2022, four Nigerian men were charged with the murder of a 20-year-old woman in a suspected ritual killing case. The men, who are aged between 18 to 20 years, were arrested on the last Saturday of January for allegedly killing Sofiat Kehinde and burning her head for money ritual purposes at Oke Aregba area of Abeokuta, Ogun State. According to reports, the deceased was dating one of the killers. She was lured by her boyfriend, Soliu, to his room where she was overpowered and killed.

Timothy Odeniyi

On February 1st, 2022, a suspected ritual killer, Timothy Odeniyi, was arrested by men of the Amotekun Corps in Ondo State, Nigeria. The 35-year-old man confessed to newsmen that he was promised N30m if he could produce and deliver human parts to Lagos. He revealed that the human parts were to be delivered to one of his bosses living in Lagos. Timothy confessed that he went to burial grounds to harvest the body parts from corpses buried claiming that he did not murder anyone.

Jennifer Anthony

In the case of Jennifer Anthony; a 20-year-old Moses Oko was been apprehended by the police for allegedly killing her for ritual purposes. Jennifer, who was a student of the University of Jos, was found lifeless at a hotel in Jos, along Zaria Road, on New Year’s Day. Some of her body parts were also missing. Moses was arrested in Benue State after he fled from Jos for committing the crime.

Afeez Olalere

Another case is that of 32-year-old Afeez Olalere, who is a suspected internet fraudster. Afeez confessed to killing his younger brother for money ritual purposes. He was arrested during a stop and search operation along Itamaga, Ikorodu road in Lagos State by operatives of the Lagos State Police Command.

Afeez confessed during interrogation that his mother encouraged him to kill his younger brother after a herbalist she took him to had told him to sacrifice one life which must be his sibling. He had planned with his mother to poison his 21-year-old brother to death. They harvested the required body parts and took his remains to the mortuary.

Source: Four Ritual Killing Cases That Shocked Nigerians In 2022

PS We do not want to withhold the publisher’s appeal for a financial support, see below (FVDK)

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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

The ugly relation between cultism and ritual killings in Nigeria

In the following report the author describes ugly incidents caused by cults in Nigeria. Many of these activities, sometimes outright crimes, haven’t anything to do with this site’s focus.

Many cultists are not criminals. But it’s not always innocent and pleasure. As explained in the article below, there also exists a relation between these cults and ritual killings.

The Field Commander of Amotekun in Osun State, Amitolu Shittu, recently stated that – in his view –  cultism is a lawless organization that should not be allowed: ‘(…) We must tackle them with force. Cultists are more or less the supporter of ritual killing and it must not be allowed in our society.”

He further accused cultists of being engaged in robbery, kidnapping, and ritual killing. He  warned that “he who kills with swords shall also be killed with the swords.”
(webmaster FVDK)

Cultism: Concerns as politicians, students, others glamorize groups’ activities

Published: December 18, 2021
By: Sikiru Obayarese  – Daily Post, Nigeria

A few weeks before he was attacked by suspected cultists for refusing to join their gang, Oke Ademiju, a final year student of Political Science at Osun State University, UNIOSUN, was set to write his final papers as a Political Science student.

Ademiju, according to eyewitnesses, was attacked with cutlasses, stones and thereafter set ablaze by his assailants before residents came to his rescue.

His school’s official account said, “Oke Ademiju Victor kept shouting that he was not going to join any cult but his assailants continued to pummel him with cutlasses, hard stones and even attempted to set him ablaze, partially succeeding until he was rescued.”

While his mates have graduated from the University, Ademiju could not write his final papers as he was bedridden due to the cult attack.

However, many said the aspiring political scientist is lucky to be alive since many like him have died or have been maimed for life for daring to reject the daredevil cultists’ proposal.

Only recently, a child of 12 years, Sylvester Oromoni, was attacked in his hostel for allegedly refusing to join a cult gang in a secondary school.

Many lives have been lost in clashes between rival cult groups over supremacy battle. Cult groups often count the number of deaths recorded by a gang as a sign of superiority, discarding life of all its values.

Now, some parents hesitate to send their children to boarding schools or even higher institutions for fear that their wards may be forcefully initiated into cult groups.

Keen watchers of the education system have also listed bullying, drug dealing, prostitution as some of the crimes to checkmate in Nigerian schools.

A recent investigation published by the BBC Africa Eye accused cult groups of masterminding illegal activities.

The report showed that many brutal killings and armed robberies in Nigeria were traced to dreaded groups such as The Neo-Black Movement of Africa (also called Black Axe); Eiye Confraternity; The National Association of Seadogs (Pyrate Confraternity); Vikings Confraternity; Brothers Across Nigeria (BAN) or National Association of Sealords also known as Buccaneers Confraternity and others.

This is the extent the threat of cultism has risen in recent times across the country.

Analysts say cultism has been unfortunately promoted as charity and humanitarian organisations, making it appealing to young people who are hoping to get connections or meet their benefactors.

Allegedly, prominent persons including politicians and celebrities in Nigeria, have been linked to violent cult clashes that have resulted in hundreds of unsolved murders in Nigeria. Till date, none has been indicted or arrested.

Artisans are not left out of the trend. In fact, they appear to be the only ones who are perpetrating most of the violence.

Even street urchins have taken over cult groups originally thought to be the preserve of university undergraduates.

In 2020, a 32-year-old Kabiru Ahmed, a tailor, who was described as cool-headed and compassionate, was arrested by the Anti-Cultism Unit of the Lagos State Police Command and confessed to killing four members of a rival cult group.

Ahmed was the hitman of the infamous Black axe (Aiye) confraternity. The cultist said the killing of his ‘Babalawo’ led to a killing spree for both the Black axe and its rival, Eiye confraternity.

While one wonders the role of security agencies amid all the violence, the Police have tried to exonerate themselves by arresting and parading suspected cultists for killing, robbing, raping and for engaging in other illegal activities.

But analysts say this still does not solve the problem from the root.

Checks by DAILY POST revealed that majorly, all the cult groups have social media handles where their activities are promoted.

A security expert, Nnamdi Anekwe Chife, who spoke to DAILY POST exclusively said the effect of glamorising cultism among young people by either celebrities or politicians has far-reaching effects.

Chife said it was utterly dangerous for Nigerian society to condone the flattering of the criminal side of cultism.

He said, “There are two sides of the debate. On one side, people are saying cults are charity organisations while on the other side, it is a criminal organisation, in the sense that they carry out criminal activities. If someone is glamorising the criminal aspect of cultism, definitely it’s going to impact the young ones.

The security expert also claimed that “on the security side, there are allegations that elements in the security outfits are also involved in cult activities but there is no proof to nail them.

“Political classes who partner with them to glamorise cultism could also be nailed too,” he said.

However, the Field Commander of Amotekun in Osun State, Comrade Amitolu Shittu said only a bad society and the nation without a good leader will fold their arms and allow cultism to rise.

According to him, “cultism is a lawless organization that should not be allow and we must tackle them with force. Cultists are more or less the supporter of ritual killing (italics mine – FVDK) and it must not be allowed in our society. The organization are lawless that we cannot be proud of because it is ungodly and God frowns at it as “he who kills with swords shall also be killed with the swords.”

Amitolu said that cultism and other social vices are one and the same. “We are doing our best day and night and we have apprehended some of them and sent them to jail. They are the ones that engage in robbery, kidnapping, and ritual killing (italics mine – FVDK), so they are not supposed to be welcomed in our society.

He said Amotekun has succeeded in reducing, “their illicit character and the killing of innocent people to barest minimum and we are not taking it kindly with them. Democracy should not be allowed to kill democracy, so democracy that we are practicing is that which encourages the rule of law and nobody has the right to kill a fellow human being, and whoever that does so, the law should be taken to their doorsteps,” he concluded.

Screenshot from the YouTube video ‘Black axe: Charitable or criminality, two sides of a coin and its danger’. To watch the video please click here.

Source: Cultism: Concerns as politicians, students, others glamorize groups’ activities