A military man, Sunday Umaru, has been arraigned before a Barkin-Ladi High Court in Plateau, for allegedly killing his lover, Charity Thomas, over a phone call.
Umaru, a married man, was a Private in the Nigerian Army and on posting at the Special Task Force (STF), sector 7, Barkin Ladi, at the time of the incident, on Jan. 23, 2016.
The hearing, scheduled for March 30, could not hold following the absence of Justice Samson Gang, who was said to be attending a function elsewhere.
Umaru was first arraigned on July 14, 2016, on a one-count of culpable homicide.
He was specifically accused of killing his lover, Charity, who came to visit him from Kaduna, by stabbing her with a knife in the stomach and slaughtering her thereafter.
According to the prosecutor, Mr W.T Awe, of the Plateau State Ministry of Justice, the accused person committed the crime on Jan. 23, 2016 in Barkin Ladi.
Awe, during the arraignment, told the court that the Nigeria Army had court-martialed the accused, dismissed him after they found him guilty, and handed him over to the police for prosecution.
He said that the accused person had told the police, in a confessional statement, that the deceased visited him sometime in January 2016, after which they had a misunderstanding which led to her death.
“In the statement, the accused alleged that the deceased used a kitchen knife to stab herself after which he (accused), removed the knife and `helped’ her to complete the act by slaughtering her,” Awe stated.
Awe further quoted the accused as saying that he was in the sitting room while Charity was in the kitchen at 7 p.m. on Jan. 23, when Charity’s phone rang and he picked the call.
The accused, in the statement, said that a man’s voice at the other insisted on speaking with Charity, but that he (accused) demanded to know who he (caller) was.
He claimed that instead of answering his inquiries, the voice rained insults on him.
Umaru, according to the statement, dropped the call, went to the kitchen and asked Charity who the caller was, but that Charity refused to provide answers to his questions, opting to remind him that he (Umaru) was a married man.
The accused further claimed that Charity, in a fit of anger, called off the relationship and declared that she was no more interested in him (Umaru), especially since her parents had consistently warned her against the affair.
“Umaru said that he got angry and slapped her, which angered Charity, who quickly picked a knife and stabbed herself in the stomach,” Awe told the court.
The statement further indicated that Charity fell down thereafter, with the accused removing the knife from her stomach and slaughtering her “to complete the job she started”.
Umaru thereafter took her body outside, left it there and reported for duty at 8 p.m.
The prosecutor said that the accused, from his duty point, went to see his family at the Maxwell Kobe Cantonment, Rukuba Barracks, after telling his boss that his wife wanted to see him over “a very pressing issue”.
“Charity’s lifeless body was found the next day by neighbours, while military men, who came to evacuate the body, trailed the blood marks to the accused person’s house.
“Friends of the accused also recognised the girl as Umaru’s lover, who was seen with him the previous day,” Awe told the court.
He said that a team of military men mobilised to go after the accused, arrested him at his home in the barracks, while in the company of his family.
According to Awe, the accused was court-martialed by the military and dismissed, after which he was handed over to the police for prosecution.
He said that during the investigation, the police discovered several gory pictures and videos of the deceased that the accused took with his phone, immediately after the murder.
The accused has, however, pleaded not guilty to the charge
At his first appearance in July 2016, Umaru’s counsel, David Adudu, prayed the court to grant his client bail, citing section 36(5) of the 1999 constitution which says that an accused is presumed innocent until otherwise proven.
Adudu had added that if the bail was granted, his client would neither jump bail nor interfere with police investigation.
Justice Samson Gang admitted the accused to bail in the sum of N200,000 and two sureties in like sum.
Gang, who ordered that the sureties must reside within the jurisdiction of the court, said that they must submit two copies of their recent passport photographs, copies of their national ID cards, GCE certificates and copies of their Rights of Occupancy.
He thereafter adjourned the matter to March 30, for hearing.
With the judge not available to hear the case, the matter was adjourned to May 25.
Zabarmari Killing: Fani-Kayode Condemns Presidency Over Insensitive Statement
Former Minister of Aviation, Femi Fani-Kayode has condemned the presidency over its statement that the 43 farmers killed by members of Boko Haram on Saturday in Borno did not have military clearance to be on the farm.
Recall that Garba Shehu, the Senior Special Assistant to President Muhammadu Buhari on Media and Publicity disclosed on Monday that the farmers slaughtered by Boko Haram terrorists on Saturday didn’t have military clearance to be on the farm.
Reacting to the development, the former Minister expressed that the statement was not a good defence for the murder.
Whether it was 43 or 110 farmers that were killed, it’s not a good defence to say they were murdered because they did not get permission to farm. Every Nigerian, whether Northern or Southern, has a right to life &deserves to be protected regardless of their occupation or trade.
Whether it was 43 or 110 farmers that were killed,it's not a good defence to say they were murdered because they did not get permission to farm. Every Nigerian,whether Northern or Southern, has a right to life &deserves to be protected regardless of their occupation or trade.
— Femi Fani-Kayode (@realFFK) November 30, 2020
Court Okays Suit Compelling Emefiele To Account For COVID-19 Donations
The Federal High Court, Abuja, on Monday, granted a suit, seeking to apply for judicial review and order of mandamus to compel the Governor of Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Godwin Emefiele, to provide details of financial donations received by the country in relation to the coronavirus pandemic.
Justice Inyang Ekwo gave the ruling in a suit filed by Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) and Heda Resource Centre as 1st and 2nd applicants respectively.
Mandamus is a judicial writ issued as a command to an inferior court or ordering a person to perform a public or statutory duty.
According to reports, the group, in an ex-parte motion marked: FHC/ABJ/CS/1456/2020, listed the CBN governor as sole respondent.
Ekwo also granted their plea to seek an order declaring that the failure of the CBN to provide the plaintiff with information on the sources of the donations, how they are being applied, among others, amounted to a violation of the applicant’s rights under the Freedom of Information Act and the African Charter on Human and People’s Rights.
He ordered the applicant to file, within seven days, a formal application for the orders sought, which must be served on the respondent within seven days.
The judge also ordered the respondent to, upon being served, file its response within 30 days.
Lawan Leads FG’s Delegation On Condolence Visit To Borno
Members of the delegation include the Chief of Staff to the President, Professor Ibrahim Gambari, Ministers of the Federal Capital Territory, Mohammed Bello, Communications and Digital Economy, Ali Pantami, and the Minister of State for Agriculture, Mustapha Baba Shehuri.
Other members are the National Security Adviser, Major General Babagana Monguno (rtd), and Senior Special Assistant( Media and Publicity) to the President, Mallam Garba Shehu.
The delegation was reportedly received on arrival at the Airport by the Borno State Deputy Governor, Usman Umar Gadafu.
The delegation is in Borno, on behalf of President Muhammadu Buhari and the Federal Government, to commiserate and identify with the family of the victims, the Government, and the people of Borno State over the incident.
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