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AfAW Seeks Prosecution Of Nweke’s Killers Over Witchcraft



AfAW Seeks Prosecution Of Nweke's Killers Over Witchcraft

The Advocacy for Alleged Witches (AfAW) has urged the inspector general of police and the Ebonyi State government to arrest and prosecute those who allegedly tortured and eventually murdered Chief Okechukwu Nweke of Ohaechara village of Inyere Community in Ezza North Local Government Area of Ebonyi State.

The appeal was contained in a statement by Dr. Leo Igwe who directs AfAW , an advocacy, not a witches’ group, that works and campaigns to end witch persecution in Africa.

Igwe said that Chief Nweke was killed following allegations of witchcraft and harmful magic.

He said :”Recently, the attention of AfAW was drawn to a post that was circulating on social media. The post states: ‘On August 28, 2021, they branded a 31-year-old wealthy man, Chief Okechukwu Nweke a witch. They accused him of being responsible for the strange misfortunes that befell the village. He went to the bank of the Akadoro river to observe prayers as a member of the Sabbath church. He was wearing a red garment.

“He was tied and dragged to the village square where he was beaten to death. He told them that he was a patent medicine dealer at Ogbo Owu market, Onitsha Anambra state but all his plea fell on deaf ears. They threw him into the Akadoro river. His lifeless body has yet to be recovered. They went through his phone and transferred five million naira…’

AfAW Seeks Prosecution Of Nweke's Killers Over Witchcraft

“The post contains the photo of Chief Nweke while he was being tortured. The photo shows Nweke sitting on the ground and tied with a rope and some palm fronds. Someone from the community told AfAW that they tortured him for some time. And when the torturers realized that he was about to die, they tied up his hands and legs, went and threw him into a nearby river.

READ ALSO: Imperative Of Civic Engagement On Witchcraft-based Violence In Malawi

“AfAW contacted relatives of the victim and they confirmed this tragic incident. The father told a local human rights group: ‘They have killed my son for envy. Okechukwu was a Sabbath worshiper and he never killed anyone and he is not a thief. He was doing good business in Onitsha and has been helping me and his younger ones. On that fateful day, our Ezeogo asked them to take my son to the police over the allegations. They agreed with the Ezeogo. But immediately they left the palace, they tied ropes on my son’s waist and neck, dragged him along the road like a goat, and began to beat and torture him mercilessly. I cried to them; I begged them but they continued to kill my son. If you know the story of Jesus Christ, that’s how Okechukwu was tortured until they reached Ohaechara playground.

After some time, our councilor came and told them that Ezeogo said they should take my son to the police. Upon hearing that, they had a brief meeting before they now tied my son’s hands backward, carried him in a motorcycle, and told us they were going to the police. I made to follow them but they asked me to go back. Very shortly, they came back to tell us that my son slipped off their hands and fell into the Akadoro river. Up until now, we have not seen my son neither has his corpse been found.’

“The traditional ruler has also narrated what happened: ‘On Saturday 28 August 2021, a group of persons brought one boy to my palace with allegations of witchcraft and voodooism. After listening to them, I advised them to take the boy to the police and warned them never to torture him. They agreed and promised me they were going to the police and I asked the boy’s father to follow them and to report back to me should anything goes wrong. I later sent the councilor to go and make sure the instruction is carried to the letter. So, if anything happens to the boy, those responsible should answer for it.’

“This trial by ordeal and horrific murder of Nweke took place in a village square. Some of the community leaders were at the scene. A source said that the local councilor was present.

“AfAW has been informed that the matter was reported to the state police command in Abakiliki. But over two months after this horrific murder, the police have yet to make an arrest or conduct any investigation. According to a relative, ‘We took the matter to the police, but nothing reasonable has been done because we learned that one politician from the village went to the police after we had left to frustrate the matter.’ ”

AfAW called the commissioner of police in Ebonyi and he promised to look into the matter and ensure that necessary measures were taken to bring the perpetrators to justice. AfAW also contacted the state attorney general and commissioner for justice. He said there was nothing his office could do until the case was charged to court.

“AfAW will continue to work with relevant stakeholders to end witchcraft accusations, witch persecution and killing. AfAW will ensure that those who carried out this gruesome murder of an innocent person are made to pay for their crime”, the group said.


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His death was confirmed by Prince Oyesinmilola Diya. He said the former military administrator of Ogun State passed on to glory in the early hours of 26th March 2023.

Born on the 3rd of April, 1944, Diya was military Governor of Ogun State after the Buhari-Idiagbon coup of December 31st, 1983.

Diya joined the Nigerian Defence Academy, Kaduna and fought during the Nigerian Civil War.

He later attended the US Army School of Infantry, the Command and Staff College, Jaji (1980–1981) and the National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies, Kuru.

While serving in the military, Diya studied law at Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, where he obtained an LLB degree, and then at the Nigerian Law School, where he was called to bar as Solicitor and Advocate of the Supreme Court of Nigeria.

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The statement read: “On behalf of the entire Diya family home and abroad; we announce the passing on to Glory of our dear Husband,Father, Grandfather,brother, Lt- General Donaldson Oladipo Oyeyinka Diya (Rtd) GCON, LLB, BL, PSC, FSS, mni.

“Our dear Daddy passed onto glory in the early hours of 26th March 2023. Please keep us in your prayers as we mourn his demise in this period. Further announcements will be made public in due course.

“Barrister Prince Oyesinmilola Diya, on behalf of the family.”

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Governor Adeleke

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The appellate court, in a unanimous decision by a three-member panel of Justices, on Friday held that the appeal Adeleke lodged to challenge his sack by the Osun State Governorship Election Petition Tribunal, was meritorious.

Aside from setting aside the judgement of the tribunal, the court, in its lead judgement that was delivered by Justice Mohammed Lawal, awarded N500, 000 cost against the All Progressive Congress, APC, and its candidate, Gboyega Oyetola

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The PDP made the suspension on Thursday after an extensive review of the affairs of the party, pursuant to the provisions of the PDP Constitution (as amended in 2017).

The PDP also referred the Governor of Benue State, Samuel Ortom, to the National Disciplinary Committee over his reported involvement in anti-party activities.

This was disclosed in a statement signed by the National Publicity Secretary, Debo Ologunagba.

“The PDP urges all leaders, critical stakeholders and teeming members of our party across the country to remain united and focused at this critical time,” the statement added.


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