Job Osazuwa; Bianca Iboma
Cold-blooded killers are here. Belligerent women are on the rampage. They are out to exact revenge and are taking the law into their own hands.
In the past, men were the ones allegedly killing their wives. But now the tables seem to be turning across Nigeria. These days, following the slightest provocation, wives grab the nearest weapon and proceed to eliminate their husbands.
On November 27, 2017, an Ibadan-based lawyer, Yewande Oyediran, was sentenced to seven years imprisonment by an Oyo State High Court in lbadan, for stabbing her husband to death. At the time, many had thought the judgement would scare other women from indulging in similar acts. But they were wrong. Since then, a number of wives have killed their husbands.
Yewande, an assistant director in the Oyo State Ministry of Justice, was alleged to have stabbed her husband, Lowo Oyediran, a France-based businessman, to death during a domestic scuffle. She reportedly knifed her husband to death on February 2, 2016, at their 30, Adeniyi Layout, Abidi-Odan, Akobo, Ibadan, home.
There was considerable shock on the faces of millions of Nigeria on May 3, 2018, when a lawyer identified as Udeme allegedly stabbed her husband, Otike Odibi, to death. She also reportedly severed the husband’s manhood and placed it in his right hand. The incident happened at about 7.30am at Diamond Estate, Sangotedo, Lagos.
The deceased, Odibi, also a lawyer, was said to have been married to his alleged killer, Udeme, for three years.
The police public relations officer, Chike Oti, said the Divisional Police Officer, Ogombo, Ajah, Lagos, received a distress call that Odibi had been murdered in his home by his wife.
“Based on the information, the DPO mobilised a team of detectives to the scene, where they found the man lying on the bed in a pool of his own blood, with his stomach ripped open exposing the intestine. As if that was not enough, the killer severed his genitals and placed it in his right hand.
“However, before the arrival of the police, Mrs. Udeme was said to have unsuccessfully attempted to commit suicide after it dawned on her that her spouse was dead. But she was rushed to the hospital for treatment by neighbours.
“Further information from a neighbour revealed that the deceased called him on phone in the night before he was murdered, complaining that the wife was threatening to kill him with a knife. The said neighbour, however, warned him to be careful. The deceased also called his mother and his younger sister complaining of a threat to his life that fateful night,” he said.
On April 26, a 45-year-old father of six, Babatunde Eso, escaped death by the whiskers in Lagos. He was allegedly bathed with a pot of boiling pepper by his wife over what the man called a little disagreement.
It was gathered that Eso suffered severe burns to his head, face, chest, nose and mouth. He has been unable to speak and is having difficulties in breathing, up to the time of putting this report together. He has remained on admission at the hospital since then, fighting for his life.
The victim had narrated to his sister what transpired between him and his wife before his condition deteriorated. His sister told Daily Sun that her brother was attacked after the man jokingly informed his wife that the person calling her on the phone was her boyfriend.
It was gathered that the woman burst into uncontrollable rage, which led to a heated argument between the two.
“In the midst of the argument, she grabbed a pot of hot pepper she was steaming on the fire and emptied it on her husband. If not that he received help on time from his neighbours, he would have been dead by now just because of one heartless woman,” the victim’s sister said.
A witness said Eso had returned from his automobile workshop in Festac Town, Lagos, that fateful day.
“Immediately he returned and went to the sitting-room, his wife’s phone rang. He told the wife that her phone was ringing, and that her boyfriend was on the line. The wife, who was busy boiling pepper for her food business, got infuriated and couldn’t control her temper.
“Her husband was weeping uncontrollably. He said he never suspected that his wife could attempt to kill him,” she said.
In November last year, Maryam Sanda was arrested by the police for allegedly stabbing her husband, Bilyaminu Haliru Bello, to death in Abuja. The husband was the son of Dr. Mohammed Haliru Bello, a former chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
A few months earlier, Mrs. Folashade Idoko, an auxiliary nurse, was arrested by the police for stabbing her husband, 32-year-old Lawrence Idoko, to death at their home in Ayetoro, Oto-Awori Local Council Development Area of Lagos. The suspect allegedly accused her husband of infidelity.
It appears that, these days, many women seem to have discovered the panacea to the long years of suffering in the hands of abusive and philandering spouses. They are increasingly converting their kitchen knives and other weapons of destruction in their homes to their personal use.
On why women kill their husbands these days, especially in a relationship in which there was no previous evidence of domestic violence, Celine Njoku, a guidance and counselling psychologist with Education District V, Lagos State Ministry of Education, said it was sometimes due to jealousy and quest to protect their love from intruders.
“When a woman starts feeling insecure, she thinks she is at the risk of losing her partner to someone else. Court documents refer to it as jealous rage or morbid jealousy. That is often the cause of the murders. In some cases of prior abuse, it makes the perpetrator lash out with lethal violence. There is an element of madness, hopelessness, frustration and emotional trauma.
“Another factor is gain: to acquire some personal and tangible benefits. The victims were killed because they had something the offender wanted such as money or property.
“Love can equally make a woman kill her husband when her spouse is suffering from a chronic physical illness and she can no longer watch him in pain. She could poison him,” Njoku said.
Also commenting on the issue, a consultant psychiatrist, Lagos University Teaching Hospital, and senior lecturer, College of Medicine, University of Lagos, Dr. Yewande Oshodi, decried the spate of physical violence being perpetrated by the womenfolk, saying that it has become a worrisome trend.
She said the drift in the killing spree might suggest a huge amount of unresolved frustration among couples with little options or outlets for seeking or receiving support.
“People must be able to ask for help and also deploy appropriate coping skills to handle life’s frustrations and stresses. Murder or suicide is never a solution. A case in which a person chooses to kill a spouse and kill herself is suggestive of a person who has decided to act in a maladaptive or criminal manner of addressing her problems. Such a person or couple should seek help and benefit from couple or individual counselling early before things deteriorate.
On his part, Samuel Akintola, a pastor at the Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG), Zion Area, Signs and Wonders Parish, Ile-Iwe, Lagos, said many couples were today marrying for the wrong reasons.
“As a matter of fact, nothing seems to have prepared many couples for the reality of married life. Many of them are easily carried away by the mere excitement of the wedding party. All they plan for is the D-day, forgetting that there are challenges ahead for every man and woman from different backgrounds who choose to live under the same roof.
“Some parents are not also helping matters. All they do is to help the bride and groom to organize ‘befitting’ weddings, without properly nurturing them on what marriage entails.
“I would advise any aggrieved partner to walk away, though that is not an easy option. But it is definitely better than killing your spouse. It is supposed to be “until death do us apart” as a vow taken by both. It is heartbreaking that, today, as soon as couples get tired of each other, they begin to scheme to arrive at the ‘death’ that would ‘do them part’.
“Young men and women of today believe that they can change their partner’s bad habits when they finally marry. The man believes marriage will change her hot temper while the lady believes that he will stop womanising when she marries him. It is usually not easy, if not impossible,” he said.