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Akwa Ibom Court Sentences 82-Year-Old Man With 12 Wives, 60 Children To Death

By Chigozie Chuks

A High Court, sitting in Uyo, the Akwa Ibom State capital, has sentenced  82-year-old Village Head of Efen Ibom, Ika Local Government Area of the State, Chief Essien Matthew Odiong to death by hanging.

The convict is married to 12 wives with 60 children and had been standing trial on a four count charge of conspiracy, directing unlawful trial by ordeal, stealing of the motorcycle and murder of the owner, Udoma Akpan Udo Ubom, who is a member of his community.

In his judgement on Friday, Justice Edem Akpan, found the accused guilty of murder of Udoma Akpan Udo Ubom by injecting some chemical substance on him, leading to his death on 26th April, 2017.

Delivering judgement, the Court held that “having sensed the consequences of his criminal activity, the monarch escaped from the Village in 2017 and returned in 2019, when he was arrested by the Police.

“The accused had voluntarily admitted that he sat at Efen Clan Council with five other village heads and members of the Clan Council and tried the deceased on the allegation of witchcraft.

“The admission of the process of trial and the decision of Efen Clan Council to administer oath on the deceased has logically brought to the conclusion that a plastic bath on the head of the late Udoma Akpan Udo Ubom and injecting some chemical substance through a syringe into his buttocks by the village head, caused the death of the deceased.”

The Court, therefore, sentenced the Village Head to death by hanging for murder, seven years imprisonment with hard labour for directing unlawful trial by ordeal and three years imprisonment for conspiracy with others, now at large.

The late Ubom, was accused by his brothers of being a Wizard and was reported to the Village Head, who brought him before the Efen Clan Council, where the deceased was given an oath to swear that he was not a Wizard.

Before he was sentenced, the convicted Village Head, popularly known as “Kill and Bury” pleaded for mercy and leniency.


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